Pecan Shortbread Bars

It’s pecan season here in the South, and I for one prefer to eat my pecans in baked-treat-form.

wiki

My parents have a pecan tree in their backyard and apparently my father eschewed his entire Saturday to-do list from my mom to crack 3 cups of pecans.

It’s a tough job.

from pnggg

Anyway, I ended up with 3 cups of pecans.

And no ideas. They seemed sacred, you know? What could I make that would do these pecans the justice they deserved (namely to make up for that undone to-do list)?

from mahanandi

So I started running down the list of stuff made with pecans.

Pie?

Eh.

Brownies with nuts?

Hmm. No.

Spiced pecans for a decorative bowl?

Overdone. Especially in December.

Then I remembered a weirdly good pecan thing from El Guapo’s best friend’s Thanksgiving that I kept snacking on for days after. It was sticky, not a pie, slightly caramelly, and you eat it with your hands.

from boesky

At least, I did. Maybe you were supposed to use a fork.

So my thoughts were rolling. What could I put a caramelly pecan goop mixture on?

Thats easy.

Shortbread. Anything is good on shortbread.

from glamquotes

So here’s my handheld-shortbread bar made with special pecans.

After preheating the oven to 350, make the shortbread bottom.

In a food processor, combine:

  • 1 1/2 cups of AP flour
  • 1 stick of butter, chopped up
  • 1/3 cup of white sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt

about to process

Pulse until it turns into crumbs.

Pour into a buttered 8 x 10 pan.

buttered pan

crumbs in the pan

Press.

pressed with fingers

Stick it in the oven until it’s brown.

After about 20-30 minutes it will look like this:

baked

Meanwhile, spread the pecans on a baking sheet and toast in the oven for 7 minutes.

toasted

You should always toast your nuts.

And now make the caramelly goop.

In a saucepan, combine:

  • 2/3 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1/3 cup white sugar
  • 3/4 stick of butter
  • 3 Tablespoons heavy cream

in the saucepan

Turn the heat on low and continuously stir until it all melts down.

starting to melt

Keep stirring until it looks like this:

melted

Now add 2 teaspoons of vanilla.

with vanilla

Let it sit for about 5 minutes to start to thicken up, then add the 3 cups of pecans into the goopy sauce.

added nuts

By now the shortbread should be brown. If so, let it cool for about 5 minutes, then pour the gooey pecan mixture onto the shortbread.

poured

top view

Let it cool for at least an hour, then cut into bars.

suck it, martha.

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Categories: Food & Drink

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