Chocolate Pecan Pie Bars

These delicious treats can be eaten fresh or frozen, and keep well, though they probably won’t last long!

Chocolate Pecan Pie Bars

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, plus 2 tbs melted butter
  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 package (11.5-12 oz) semisweet chocolate (2 cups)
  • 2 cups coarsely chopped pecans

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F
  2. Line the bottom and sides of a 9 x 13 inch baking pan with aluminum foil. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat one stick room-temperature butter, brown sugar, flour, and salt until coarse crumbs form. Pour mixture into prepared pan; press firmly into bottom.
  3. Bake until lightly browned, 25-30 minutes. Let cool for ten minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, in the same large bowl, mix eggs, corn syrup, granulated sugar, and melted butter until well combined. Add chocolate chips and pecans; spread over crust. Bake until set, 25-30 minutes. Cool completely in pan before lifting out (using foil to lift).
  5. Cut into 32 bars (8 rows by 4 rows).

This recipe comes from Monica Svatek, writing for tastebook.com, and I was introduced to it by way of my sister Isabella. I looked for a link, but the page has been taken down.

My suggestions:

When putting the crust in the pan, use a plastic drinking glass with smooth sides to roll out the mixture smoothly. If you don’t want to freeze the bars, keep them in a cool, dry place.

This is a straightforward recipe that can be made well ahead of time, and I made it last Christmas, where it proved a popular treat.

Bûche de Noël (the Yule Log)

 

Ah, the pièce de résistance of the Christmas table. Ever since I found about this magnificent dessert, I longed to make one.

A bûche de noël is a chocolate roulade (a sponge cake, such as that used to make a Swiss/jelly roll). I used a recipe from Cook’s Illustrated, of the November/December 2000 issue. It has many steps, but if you’re willing to take the time, it is a beautiful dessert, which can be used as a centerpiece on your Christmas table.

Don’t worry if the cake cracks a little while you’re rolling it up–it will be covered by the ganache, which can be made to resemble tree bark by running a fork through it. Cut off the ends of the sponge cake to add stumps to your log, and sprinkle with powdered sugar for snow!

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Dusted with “snow” (powdered sugar)
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The Yule Log
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Cutting into the cake: it sliced like a dream!
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It was delicious! The texture of the cake was particularly appealing

A dessert that requires such a significant investment of time and energy should be as delicious as it is visually impressive, and this recipe fits the bill. This dessert proved very popular with my family, and disappeared quickly. I hope to make it a tradition.