And I have ruined several recipes by not tasting the nuts first, going ahead and putting them in, and then being very disappointed with the outcome. Plus nuts are expensive and I hate to see them go to waste.
So, I make an effort after the holidays to use up the partially opened bags, especially the pecans, which seem to go "off" quickly.
I found this recipe in the Yellow Farmhouse Cookbook. It had to be easy. Something I could whip up easily. Southern Pecan bars fit the bill perfectly.
"This recipe comes from Pillsbury's 5th $100,000 Bake-Off contest, which was run in 1954."
Southern Pecan Bars
(The Yellow Farmhouse Cookbook, page 258)
Makes about 36 bars, 1.5 inches square
1 cup flour
1/4 t. baking powder
4 T. (1/2 stick) butter, softened
1/3 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/4 cup pecans, finely chopped
For the topping:
3/4 cup dark corn syrup
1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
2 T. flour
1/2 t. salt
1 t. vanilla extract
3/4 cup pecans, chopped
Heat oven to 350 degrees. (note from B: Be sure that your butter and eggs are at room temperature)
Grease a 9-inch square pan.
Sift together the flour and baking powder.
Add the flour mixture and continue beating until mixture resembles coarse meal.
I also made an almond variation using leftover almonds. Substitute toasted almonds for the pecans, light for the dark caro syrup, and almond extract for the vanilla extract.