About this time of year I venture over to the Farmer's Market and get my yearly supply of pecans. I use the pecans for pies and for making Hot Pepper Pecans. One of the pies I usually make at Thanksgiving (and again at Christmas) is the Southern Pecan Pie. I ran across a recipe recently for Pecan Pie Bars, and I've decided I will break from tradition and try these. These can be frozen and can be used for finger food should I decide to have an open house or whenever someone drops by unexpectedly. They will also make good holiday gifts.
Pecan Pie Bars
1 1/2 cup butter, softened
1 2/3 cup brown sugar
2 2/3 cup all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt (if you are using unsalted butter)
1/3 cup honey
2 tablespoons of creme fraiche or heavy cream
2 cups of chopped pecans
Preheat the oven to 350F and line a 9x13inch pan with foil, leaving enough for a 2-inch overhang on all sides.
Make the crust by creaming together 1 cup butter, 2/3 cup brown sugar, in a stand mixer. Add flour, salt, and mix until crumbly.
Press the crust into the foil lined pan and bake for 20 minutes until golden brown.
As the crust bakes, prepare the topping by combing 1/2 cup butter, 1 cup brown sugar, honey, and creme fraiche in a saucepan over medium heat. Simmer for one minute and pour in the pecans.
Remove the crust from the oven and immediately pour the topping over the hot crust spreading it to cover the entire surface.
Return the pan to the oven and bake an additional 20 minutes.
Remove the pan and allow the bars to fully cool in the pan.
Use the foil to lift the bars and transfer them to a cutting board. Peel off the foil and slice into bars.
This recipe doesn't use eggs, but many of the recipes that I checked for pecan pie bars do. I think I will make a second batch using a recipe that calls for eggs, because I always use eggs in a pecan pie.