Recipe: Honey Maple Pecan Bars
Makes 35 to 40 bars
Make ahead: The bars can be stored between sheets of waxed paper in an airtight container for up to 10 days. They can be frozen for up to 1 month. Defrost thoroughly before serving.
For the crust
24 tablespoons (3 sticks) chilled salted butter, cut into small chunks
1 cup confectioners’ sugar
2 large eggs
4 cups flour, preferably unbleached
For the filling
1½ cups packed light brown sugar
½ cup good-quality honey
¼ cup pure maple syrup
12 tablespoons (1½ sticks) chilled unsalted butter, cut into several pieces
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
4 cups pecan halves or pieces, toasted
1. For the crust: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
2. Combine the butter and confectioners’ sugar in a food processor. Pulse for 20 seconds, then stop to add the eggs and flour; process just long enough to form a dough. Transfer to the baking sheet and press evenly to cover the parchment, including all the way into the corners and up the sides of the baking sheet; you’ll need the edges to contain the filling. Bake for eight minutes, then use a fork to prick the dough in several places. Bake for 15 minutes or until golden. Cool slightly.
3. Once the crust is out of the oven, make the filling: Combine the brown sugar, honey, maple syrup and butter in a deep saucepan over medium-high heat. Cook, stirring, until the butter has melted. Once the mixture comes to a boil, cook for two minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla extract and pecans.
4. Pour over the crust, using a spatula to spread the filling evenly. Bake (at 350 degrees) for 20 minutes; the filling should be somewhat bubbly.
5. Cool completely before cutting into 35 to 40 bars.
Nutritional information per bar (based on 40): 270 calories, 3 g protein, 27 g carbohydrates, 18 g fat, 7 g saturated fat, 40 mg cholesterol, 10 mg sodium, 1 g dietary fiber, 16 g sugar
Adapted by The Washington Post from “The Fallingwater Cookbook: Elsie Henderson’s Recipes & Memories,” by Suzanne Martinson with Jane Citron and Robert Sendall (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2008).