Chocolate Pecan Bars

Finished pecan bars

Before I talk about these Chocolate Pecan Bars let me tell you why it’s been quiet here. This weekend I finally resurfaced in my kitchen. Two weeks ago my little Max had knee surgery. I learned the challenges of working full time and caring for a puppy that is suddenly contained. Today, the sutures came out and only a month more of containment.

Are you wondering what brought me back into the kitchen? My favorite yearly event, the Oscars. I am movie buff from a movie crazed family. Which is ironic since I wasn’t  allowed to see many movies growing up. That Baptist preachers kid thing. Movies were an escape. They took me to another place and time. When I was really young we went and saw    at the Cinerama Dome in Hollywood. In junior high  my dear dad took me to see Gone With The Wind on a big screen. That is a commitment and love.

These days I love seeing movies through the eyes of my niece and nephews. This weekend we saw Alice in Wonderland. Bizarre but good. Johnny Depp has the talent to make creepy and crazy seem endearing.

Carol filling out her ballot

Every year my friend Carol and I throw a party. Some big and dressy, others small and casual. This year was the small and casual. However these caught my eye over at Twig and Thistle and I forgot our party was small and casual. So I made these treat bags for the party
Oscar Treat Bags

Then I printed these from Twig and Thistle.

Then I made enough food for a small army. Even Carol’s husband bringing 4 of his friends over after golf didn’t really make a dent. I may have gone a bit overboard.

Craig, Laurie, KarlIMG_5884

After years of looking at this recipe I made the Chocolate Pecan Bars from Barefoot Contessa. I am hesitant to even list the ingredients. It is hard to believe Ina hasn’t had a heart attack cooking like this. Then I dipped these in chocolate. My mother almost had a heart attack.

This recipe makes enough to give to your family, work and neighbors! What is your favorite movie memory? Share in the comments!

Pecan Bars

Recipe by Ina Garten


1 1/4 pounds unsalted butter, room temperature
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3 extra-large eggs
3/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt


1 pound unsalted butter
1 cup good honey
3 cups light brown sugar, packed
1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
1 teaspoon grated orange zest
1/4 cup heavy cream
2 pounds pecans, coarsely chopped

Milk Chocolate for Dipping (optional)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

pecans in panpecans in pan

For the crust, beat the butter and granulated sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, until light, approximately 3 minutes. Add the eggs and the vanilla and mix well. Sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Mix the dry ingredients into the batter with the mixer on low speed until just combined. Press the dough evenly into an ungreased 18 by 12 by 1-inch baking sheet, making an edge around the outside. It will be very sticky; sprinkle the dough and your hands lightly with flour. Bake for 15 minutes, until the crust is set but not browned. Allow to cool.


For the topping, combine the butter, honey, brown sugar, and zests in a large, heavy-bottomed saucepan. Cook over low heat until the butter is melted, using a wooden spoon to stir. Raise the heat and boil for 3 minutes. Remove from the heat. Stir in the heavy cream and pecans. Pour over the crust, trying not to get the filling between the crust and the pan. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until the filling is set. Remove from the oven and allow to cool. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate until cold. Cut into bars and serve.

ready to bake

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