Makes 12 large bars
Blondies have a tendency to be dry, but there are two solutions: Underbake them a little, and store them in the refrigerator wrapped tightly with plastic wrap.
½ pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup light brown sugar, lightly packed
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½ cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
2 extra-large eggs, at room temperature
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1½ cups chopped walnuts
1¼ pounds semisweet chocolate chunks
1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour an 8½-by-12-by-2-inch baking pan.
2. Cream butter, brown sugar, granulated sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Mix on high speed for three minutes, until light and fluffy. With mixer on low, add vanilla. Add eggs one at a time, and mix well, scraping down the bowl after each addition. In small bowl, sift together flour, baking soda and salt. With mixer still on low, slowly add flour mixture to butter mixture. Fold in walnuts and chocolate chunks with a rubber spatula.
3. Spread batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top. Bake for 30 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean. Don’t over bake. The toothpick may have melted chocolate on it but it shouldn’t have wet batter.
4. Cool completely in the pan and cut into 12 bars.
Adapted by The Raleigh (N.C.) News & Observer from “Barefoot Contessa Foolproof: Recipes You Can Trust,” by Ina Garten (Clarkson Potter, 2012).