Saturday, January 23, 2010

Raising The Bar

I made these as part of my Christmas cookie boxes and my family claimed them as their absolute favorites. Everyone that tasted them asked for the recipe and I was happy to oblige. Now I'm sharing it with you! It's no secret though, as it comes from Martha Stewart and can be found on her website.

These were really simple to make. In fact the hardest part of the recipe is waiting for them to cool enough to cut into. I made them before we left to dinner and by the time we got home they were completely cooled and waiting for me on my kitchen counter. Nutty, buttery, crunchy, chewy...Oh come to mama!

I loved the edges of the bars in the pan because they got extra crunchy and sticky. They were also less pretty than the bars in the center so I ate them :-) I couldn't give less than perfect pecan bars as gifts could I? Another favorite part was the caramel filling that's made on the stove top BEFORE it's baked. Be sure to have a spoonful all to yourself prior to pouring it all in the pan. You'll be glad you did.

Pecan Bars from Martha Stewart

FOR THE CRUST:

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, chilled and cut into small pieces
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten

FOR THE FILLING

  • 3/4 cup packed light-brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 8 ounces (about 2 cups) pecans
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) chilled unsalted butter, cut into small pieces

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a 9-inch square baking pan with foil.

Make the crust: In a food processor, pulse flour, sugar, and salt to combine. Add butter; pulse until mixture resembles coarse meal. Add egg; pulse just until a dough forms.

Transfer dough to prepared pan; with floured fingers and an offset spatula, press firmly into bottom and 3/4 inch up sides. Freeze until firm, about 15 minutes.

Prick bottom of dough; bake until lightly golden, 22 to 25 minutes. Let cool while preparing filling.

Make the filling: In a large saucepan, bring butter, brown sugar, and corn syrup to a boil over high heat, whisking constantly, until smooth; continue boiling, without stirring, until slightly darkened, about 2 minutes.

Remove pan from heat. Whisk in cream and salt; mix in pecans.

Assemble and bake: Spoon hot filling evenly over crust, using spoon to arrange and press in nuts so they fit snugly (create as flat a surface as possible).

Bake until bubbling and golden-colored, 18 to 22 minutes. Cool completely in pan.

Using foil, lift cake from pan; peel off foil. With a sharp knife, trim edges (if desired). Cut into 6 even strips; cut each strip crosswise into 4 even strips to make 24 bars.

mmm!

36 comments:

Future Grown-Up said...

I am totally drooling right now...these look wonderful.

Ruth's Photo Blog said...

Oh,these look marvelous.Yummy.
Blessings,Ruth

american girl primitives said...

Monica,

These look delicious I just love pecan anything! If Martha makes them they must be good.

Carey

Ingrid said...

Oh, yes! Come to Mama indeed! Monica these look insanely good. They have just about everything I love (I'm throwing in some cinnamon but will forego the marsmmallows!)and of course they're bars. :)
~ingrid

Sue (Someone's Mom) said...

I have to take a dessert to a progressive dinner next weekend. It has to be something that can keep in the car for the first 2 stops...this might just fit the bill if it is as good as you say. They expect great things!

Sue

tamilyn said...

If you make it (with pecans) Tami will eat them......Yum!

Peggy Clyde. said...

Next to chocolate, I love caramel and pecans. Thanks for this recipe.

A Feast for the Eyes said...

LOL, you are a perfectionist. These are gorgeous. I'm not wild about pecan pie, because it's too gooey and over-the-top sweet. These are the perfect answer-- perfect bites of pecans, which I love. So, um, I have to bribe you to send some to me next Christmas!

Julie Harward said...

THEY SOUND SO FATTENING! MY KIND OF BAR...YUMMY! COME SAY HI :D

Sook said...

Pecan bars! I love anything with pecans, really. But these bars look amazing. I'm definitely saving the recipe for the next holiday season. :)

Marie said...

Oh my . . . those look positively wonderful!!

Memória said...

I don't even like nuts and still that macro shot had me drooling haha. I love your photos. These bars look fantastic. Bookmarked! Get ready for a pecanless version haha.

Molly said...

These look fantastic! I will be making these for sure!

Megan said...

I've only made Ina's pecan squares - and they are so good, it's bad to have them around!

Julie said...

Yum, wonderful way to scarf up some pecans!

Anna said...

Gotta love Martha--she's failsafe. Hmm, how about a new movie--Monica and Martha?!

Adele said...

Holy cow- These look so delicious. I will be sure to have a spoonful of caramel filling. Caramel is my favorite... Nutty, buttery, crunchy, and chewy- this recipe sounds like it is made for me! Cannot wait to try it!

Laura said...

Hnhhh those look damn! good Monica. I love homemade caramel to drizzle on stuff...or eat with a spoon

Leslie Limon said...

I can't wait to get my oven fixed. These bars are definitely on my list of things to bake!

Lissaloo said...

Those look fantastic! I tried the red velvet cake, my very first time ever- baking or eating one.
It Was Wonderful!!! I used your frosting too, the family LOVED it :)

Donna-FFW said...

I dont think Ive ever seen pecan bars look more beautiful, they are just gorgeous and I want some. Immediatley.

Katie said...

These look fantastic! I love pecans and this looks like pecan pie in bar form - yum. Send some my way.

cookies and cups said...

I have been wanting to make these...soo glad that martha got it right and these are a winner!

Mya said...

Soooooooo trying these!

Andrew's Mom said...

Oh. My. God. If I smoked, I'd need a cigarette after seeing those - I am making those this week. Danger Jenny Hartin! Danger!

Smitten Sugar said...

Haha...I love it! Come to mama! Thats hysterical. These look great and I bet were a perfect selection for your holiday treats!

I was missing for a few weeks but I am back now! Yeah!!

Now I just have to play catch up with my blog :)

Tia said...

ooh! they look so wholesome yet sinful all at once.

oneordinaryday said...

These would have been so much tastier than the quicky cake mix cookie bars I made today. Wish I'd had the time!!! Also wish I had one. teehee

Bunny said...

Oh how I've missed you!! These look so good I can taste them! We must be related some how, sistas in sugar girl cause I love everything you make!

Diana's Cocina said...

Monica, these bars are soooo good. I have made them many times and they are better each time. I must say mine NEVER look as pretty as yours do. Love, love love your blog!

Melissa said...

Mmmm!! They look great! I will have to make these for my dad, he is a complete pecan fiend!

Sophie said...

These came out flawless--I'm convinced Martha would be jealous :). I am a big fan of the 'edges' when it comes to desserts :D.

loneilteaches said...

These sound completely amazing! How well do they keep? Do you think they would ship oversees well? I am looking for good ideas to send to a soldier that I am baking for and pecans scream America to me.

Monica H said...

Loneilteaches, I made these a few days before Christmas but they sat for a day in the counter before they went to the freezer, where they sat for another week. After I passed out the cookie boxes they were at room temp for another week.

I'm not sure how long they'd be travelling for, but I would say that they'd stay fresh for about a week. Of course nothing is as great as it is on the first day but they'd still be good.

If I were you, I'd wrap each bar individually in parchment or plastic wrap because when they're at room temp the filling becomes a little loose- meaning the pecans try to break away.

If you make them let me know how you like them. I think whoever receives them will love them. Thanks for thinking of our soldiers.

Kerstin said...

Waiting for things to cool is always the hardest part! These look fabulous!

foodie@foodieportal.com said...

We love your pictures and recipes, they are mouth watering. Would love for you to share them with us at foodieportal.com. We are new but at foodieportal.com we are not photography snobs, we are just foodies.

Related Posts with Thumbnails