I tried this the other day; I love pecan pie, but my recipe for it is a bit gooey to use as anything other than a hot dessert. These bars have a nice shortbread-ish base, and are firm enough to be sliced and used for packed lunches. You can either eat it cold, or reheat and eat with ice cream.
For the base:
- 225g plain flour (all-purpose flour)
- 170g butter, softened
- 75g dark brown sugar
- 85g chopped pecan nuts
For the topping:
- 350ml golden syrup (or corn syrup)
- 150g dark brown sugar
- 4 eggs
- 6 tablespoons plain flour (all-purpose flour)
- 2 teaspoons vanilla essence
- 190g pecans (chop if you want, but you don’t have to)
- Baking tin 9×13 inches
- Greaseproof paper to line the tin
- Heat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius
- Line a 9×13 inch baking tin with greaseproof paper. Do this by cutting a rectangle that is slightly bigger than the base + the side height. Line the tin by folding the corners, so there are no gaps. (This is important because the filling is sloppy; if there are gaps, it will leak through and glue your pecan bars to the tin. You can get it out, but it’s harder to do – and why make things harder than they have to be?)
Make the base:
- Mix the butter and the 75g dark brown sugar together in a bowl.
- Add the 225g plain flour gradually, and mix until it resembles coarse breadcrumbs.
- Mix in the 85g crushed/chopped pecan nuts.
- Pour into the tin and press until it sticks together in an even layer in the bottom of the tin. You can do this with your knuckles, or with something smooth.
- Bake for 18-22 minutes, or until the edges are just starting to go brown.
Make the filling:
- Break the eggs into a large bowl and beat them.
- Mix in the golden syrup.
- Mix in the vanilla essence.
- Mix in the 150g dark brown sugar.
- Mix in the 6 tablespoons of flour, and beat until you have a smooth mixture.
- Pour the mixture into the tin on top of the base (which is now part-cooked as above).
- Sprinkle the remaining pecans on top.
- Return to the oven and bake for another 30-35 minutes, or until it’s done. It’s done when the topping is set (test by inserting a knife, which should come out clean or nearly so).
- Leave to cool completely, then refrigerate.
- Once it’s cold, cut into bars with a sharp knife.