Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Graham Cracker Chewy Bars

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Source: Jan Can Cook



Graham Cracker Chewy Bars

Note: Adapted from "Celebrating With Julienne" by Susan Campoy. Campoy writes, "I adapted this recipe from one of my favorite books, 'Nantucket Open-House Cookbook,' by Sarah Leah Chase. I love watching people's expressions when they bite into these bars for the first time. The textures and flavors - rich toffee, a chewy center and a crunchy bottom -- make everyone smile. The secret is not to over-bake the crust. Serve them at room temperature, so the flavors meld together."

Crust

3 cups graham cracker crumbs
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) butter, at room temperature
1/4 cup sugar
2 Tbsp. flour

1. Heat the oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl with an electric mixer, or in the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the graham cracker crumbs, butter, sugar and flour until moist and well-blended. Press the mixture firmly and evenly over the bottom of a 13-inch by 9-inch baking pan. Bake until the crust is golden brown, 10 to 15 minutes.


Topping and assembly

2 1/2 cups brown sugar
4 extra-large eggs
2/3 cup graham cracker crumbs

1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 cup pecans, chopped
1 prepared crust

Powdered sugar, if desired

1. While the crust is baking, in a large bowl, whisk together the brown sugar and eggs to blend. Whisk in the graham cracker crumbs, vanilla, salt and baking powder until well-blended. Stir in the pecans.

2. Spread the mixture over the baked crust and return to the 350-degree oven until the filling is dark-golden on top and jiggles slightly when tapped, 20 to 25 minutes. Transfer the pan to a cooling rack and cool completely.

3. Sprinkle a light coating of sifted powdered sugar over the pan if desired, and cut into 24 bars. The bars can be made 1 day in advance. Wrap in plastic and keep at room temperature.