Many of the recipes in Audrey’s Recipe Box are ones that I’ve never actually seen or tasted before, such as these oatmeal carmelitas. I made a complete mess of them! I had a very difficult time keeping the squares intact during cutting. The bottom was dry and crumbly (in a bad way), while the top was rock hard!
So what went wrong? I looked up a few competing caramelita recipes online and found that carmelitas are actually supposed to have the caramel in the middle, not as a topping! Re-reading Grandma Clarke’s instructions, I see that she does mention pressing only half the oatmeal mixture into the pan at first, followed by crumbling the remaining mixture on top before the second bake. Crap! I completely skipped that part! On the bright side, those fall-coloured M&Ms I added look great, don’t they?
Lesson learned: read the full instructions before you start.
Despite my failure to follow the directions, these dessert squares were quite tasty—especially when microwaved and served with a scoop of ice cream. I am definitely going to try these again some day. I’d like to get them right!
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 cup quick cooking rolled oats
- ¾ cup finely packed brown sugar
- ½ teaspoon [baking] soda
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¾ cups butter or margarine (melted)
- 1 cup (6 oz. pkg.) semi-sweet chocolate chips
- ½ cup chopped pecans
- ¾ cup caramel ice cream topping
- 3 tablespoons flour
Combine flour, oats, brown sugar, [baking] soda, salt and melted butter, blend at low speed to form crumbs.
Press half of crumbs into 11″ x 7″ or 9″ sq. pan, bake 10 mins in 350°F oven.
Remove from oven, sprinkle choco. chips and pecans over crumbs, blend caramel topping and flour, and pour over the choco. bits and nuts to cover, sprinkle with the remaining crumbs and bake 15-20 mins or longer until golden brown.
Chill 1-2 hours, cut into bars, makes 24 bars.