Pecan Pie Shortbread

1 cup unsalted butter; room temp
1 cup maple syrup; room temp
½ teaspoon sea salt
3 cups plus 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
4 tablespoons unsalted butter; melted
1½ cups Pecan Valley Pecan Pieces

1. Preheat oven to 350ºF.
2. Cream the 1 cup soft butter with an electric mixer. When somewhat fluffy, gradually drizzling ½ cup of the maple syrup. Add the salt, and then 3 cups of flour, ½ cup at a time. If the mixture starts to clump up too much in the beaters, switch to a wooden spoon. With floured hands, pat the soft dough evenly into a lightly greased 8-inch by 12-inch baking pan. Refrigerate while you make the topping.
3. Again using an electric mixer beat the egg for a minute. Continue to beat, adding the remaining ½ cup maple syrup, the vanilla, melted butter, and the remaining tablespoon of flour. Stir in the nuts. Spread evenly over the shortbread
4. Bake in preheated oven for about 40 minutes, until the top is set. Cool on a rack before cutting into bars.

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