They are none other than Chocolate Chip Cookies gone high and square!
A couple weeks ago, I was baking chocolate chip cookies with kids in summer camp, and our baking conditions were rudimentary, to say the least. We needed to bake 48 cookies in a convection oven large enough to bake, say, 2 pans of 12 cookies. So, simple math, half the batter was in, half was out. What to do? I poured the remaining batter into the little tray with sides that goes into the convection oven. And, guys, it was fabulous. This is the one the kids wanted: The Chocolate Blondies Bars! They do look and taste like the love child of brownies and chocolate chip cookies: Good genes!
Back home, even with all the oven room I needed, I tinkered with the recipe, to obtain a sort of cookie tart that would give me a more dramatic presentation that the humble cookie. I thought the amount of sweetness that worked so well for Chocolate Chip Cookies needed to be reduced for the perfect bar. So I cut the sugar by half and never looked back, left everything else exactly as is, folded toasted walnuts into the batter, poured the batter into a tart pan, and waited impatiently for my chocolate blondies. Yum!
Since my taste is always for a decidedly less sweet flavor, I greatly welcome the chocolate blondies variation.
This will work very well with gluten-free flour as well.