Saturday, November 3, 2012

Caramel Pecan Bars

Who likes caramel and pecans?  Yes!  I can envision the hands in the air.  Combine that with a buttery crust and you have a wonderful bar that will make you do back flips with each and every bite.

These bars remind me of pecan pie...sort of,  but just not quite.
This is a nice alternative to pecan pie for those of you who break out in a sweat at the thought of having to bake a pie or make pie crust.  Fear no more.  The crust for these bars does not require a rolling pin.  You pat the crust into the pan with your fingers.  How simple is that! 

I have gotta warn you though, you will need to bust out your stretchy waistband pants or loosen your belt a notch because these babies will blow you diet!  They are loaded with butter, brown sugar, get the picture. Do not skimp on the ingredients, use real butter and real cream.  You'll be glad you did. 

Although I didn't try it, I believe that the topping mixture would be amazing served warm over vanilla bean ice cream. Yup, I sampled it. I admit it.  I intentionally left a little in the pan so I could indulge....hey, quality control right?

These bar cookies travel well and would be great for a Thanksgiving or Christmas gathering, a Cookie Exchange or to take to work for Goodie Day.  If you have new neighbors, they would make a great housewarming gift.  I'll likely whip of a batch of these this winter for the neighbor who clears my driveway with his snow blower (please oh, please let there be that much snow this year)!

Caramel Pecan Bars



2 sticks of unsalted butter, softened
2/3 cup packed brown sugar
2 2/3 cups all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt.


1 stick of unsalted butter
1 cup packed light brown sugar
1/3 cup honey
2 Tablespoons heavy cream
pinch of salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla  
2 cups chopped pecans


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Line a 13 x 9 inch pan with foil, leaving enough for a 2 inch overhang on all sides.  

In the bowl of a food processor, pulse the soften butter and sugar until creamy (or you could use a mixer) and beat 'til fluffy). Add in the flour and salt and mix until crumbly.

Pour the mixture into the foil lined pan and press the mixture out evenly.  The mixture is a bit sticky, so flour your fingers first.  Bake in the preheated oven for 20 minutes or until golden brown.

While the crust is in the oven, prepare the topping.  In a heavy saucepan over medium heat, combine the butter, brown sugar, honey, heavy cream and salt.  Stir constantly until mixture begins to bubble.
Simmer for 1 minute then stir in the vanilla.  The mixture will bubble up a bit.  Add the pecans and stir to thoroughly mix.
When your crust is baked, remove it from the oven and immediately pour the topping over the hot crust, spreading it to cover the entire surface.

Return the pan to the oven and bake an additional 20 minutes.

Once complete, allow the bars to fully cool to room temperature.  
Use the foil overhang to remove the bars from the pan.  Peel off the foil and transfer the bars to a cutting board.  Cut into serving pieces and serve.

....Mmmmmmmmm Good!  Get busy and make a pan of these!

and...that's What's Cooking at Cathy's ~ Enjoy!

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About Me

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My career is in IT.  Cooking and photography are among a few of my hobbies. In my spare time, which is most weekends I tie on my apron and exercise my creativity by trying new recipes and adapting them to my tastes. I also have a passion for photography that I incorporate by taking photographs to go along with the recipes I post on my blog.  
I also enjoy travel, both near and abroad. Meeting new people, new experiences and cultures and oh, not to mention the food! I hope you enjoy my blog.