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The Original Nanaimo Bar

The Original Nanaimo Bar	Opens photo in lightbox. Hit Escape or X to exit lightbox.

Nanaimo Bars are a traditional Canadian bar cookie whose origins are in Nanaimo, British Columbia.

BOTTOM LAYER

1/2 cup unsalted butter (Euro-style cultured)
1/4 cup sugar
5 tablespoons cocoa
1 egg, beaten
1 3/4 cup graham wafer crumbs
1/2 cup finely chopped almonds
1 cup coconut

Melt first 3 ingredients in top of a double boiler. Add egg and stir to cook and thicken Remove from heat. Stir in crumbs, coconut and nuts. Press firmly into an ungreased 8 X 8 pan.

SECOND LAYER

1/2 cup unsalted butter
2 tablespoons and 2 tsp. cream
2 tablespoons vanilla custard powder (such as Birds -- see Note below)
2 cups icing sugar

Cream butter, cream, custard powder and icing sugar together well. Beat until light. Spread over bottom layer.

THIRD LAYER

4 squares semi-sweet chocolate (1 oz. each)
2 tablespoons unsalted butter

Melt chocolate and butter over low heat. Cool When cool, but still liquid, pour over second layer and chill in refrigerator.

Note: Birds custard powder is widely available in the UK and Canada. However, it is harder to find in other areas of the world. If you are unable to find it, try the Napoleon Creams recipe which uses vanilla pudding. It's not quite the same, but it is a good substitute.

Photo by crd! under Creative Commons license.

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Reviews of The Original Nanaimo Bar:

1-5 of 60 reviews   Next >>

  Kathy in Currently, Vancouver Island, but grew up on East Coast  Nov 22, 2013
Would make this again.
My mother and her friends always made these at Christmas. It was my all time favourite. Infact,one Christmas will our family was visiting friends,my mother commented that I would never guess what was for dessert. Of course, I knew that if it was so good that it must be Nanaimo bars -- and I said so! 5 stars

  Cyndy in Wisconsin  Nov 13, 2013
Would make this again.
These used to be in the Electric Company Cookie Book in Milwaukee when I was a child...called Vanilla Cream Bars. My all-time favorite! 5 stars

  A cookie baker in Oregon  Oct 25, 2013
Would make this again.
I went to Nanaimo 30 years ago and purchased the different flavored bars they had in the shop. I fell in love with them. Later, I met someone with the recipe and was sworn to secretly. So glad it's out now. 5 stars

  sis in california  Oct 7, 2013
Would make this again.
You can get birds custard powder on Amazon. 5 stars

  jerome davis in lacey wash.  Aug 18, 2013
Would make this again.
love them 5 stars

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