I have a chocolate chip habit. Starting at Noon (never before, I have self-restraint!) I will eat a few semi-sweet chocolate chips here and a few there. Punctuating my day with a few morsels of chocolate bliss! My fiancé thinks that I should just buy a chocolate bar and be done with it, but where is the fun in that? Plus, as a baker, I always need to have chocolate chips on hand so I can whip something up at a moments notice! I shudder to think what would have happened if I had found this recipe for Chocolate Halfway Bars and hadn’t had any chocolate chips on hand!
Several weeks ago I was thumbing through my favorite Good Housekeeping Cookbook 1955 edition for a dessert that I had never seen before, and I happened upon Chocolate Halfway Bars. These strange confections have a blondie-like base with gooey chocolate chips and a meringue cooked to perfection over top. They were so deliciously different it had me wondering, “What is halfway about them? Certainly not taste!”
There are some drawbacks to this sinfully sweet dessert: they do not travel well and they do not taste as good the next day. They are best when cooled and served the same day they are baked. The meringue is the perfect balance of chewy and crispy and the blondie base is delicious all by itself!
It’s strange that these Chocolate Halfway Bars are not as widely popular as they were half a century ago. The sweet treat certainly deserves a place at the modern American table!
Chocolate Halfway Bars
Good Housekeeping Cookbook, 1955 Edition
1 cup sifted all-purpose flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon baking powder
½ cup soft shortening
¼ cup granulated sugar
¼ cup brown sugar, packed
1 egg, separated
1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
1 ½ teaspoons water
½ cup semisweet chocolate chips [I used 1 cup because a ½ seemed so scant!]
½ cup brown sugar, packed
Preheat oven to 375° and grease a 12”x8”x2” baking dish. I used an 8” square because I like thicker bars, and I lined my baking dish with parchment because meringue can be a challenge to clean. It’s your call.
Sift flour, salt, soda, and baking powder and set aside.
Pat into baking dish and top with chocolate chips.
Beat egg white until stiff; gradually beat in ½ cup brown sugar. Spread over chocolate. Bake in prepared dish for 25 minutes or until done. The top will be golden. Cut into bars while warm. Cool completely.