German chocolate cake is one of my childhood loves. My mother used to make it from a cake mix with store-bought frosting. And that was just fine with me.
Having an anti-coconut husband has limited my baking with coconuts over the last several years. In the spirit of “absence makes the heart grow fonder,” I think I enjoy all that German chocolate-y goodness even more because I don’t have it very often.
In this case, those nostalgic flavors are baked into pecan pie bars. If you’ve never made pecan pie bars, imagine those gooey filling and toasty pecans of pie fame filling a simple crust and baked in a big pan instead of a pie plate. Add to that a little cocoa in the crust, some melty chocolate on top of the crust, and stir in some coconut with the pecans. Now, we’re talking!
These are, without a doubt, the best pecan pie bars I’ve ever made. I am usually reluctant to throw out such accolades, but it is completely appropriate in this case. If you are a fan of German chocolate cake, then I think you’ll love them, too. If you don’t like coconut, you can just leave that out and add more pecans or maybe some chocolate chips.
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus 2 tablespoons melted
1/4 cup packed with light brown sugar
1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour (spoonful and flat)
Salt 1/2 tsp
3 large eggs
3/4 cup corn syrup
1/2 cup grainy sugar
1 pack semisweet chocolate chips
2 cups coarsely divided pecans
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line the bottom and sides of the 9-by-13-inch baking pan with aluminum foil. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat 1 room temperature butter, brown sugar, flour, and salt until coarse crumbs form. Cast blending to a prepared pan; Press firmly to the bottom.
Baking until brown, 26-31 min . Permit cooled , 11 min .
Meantime, in a big bowl, blend eggs, corn syrup, granulated sugar and melted butter until ingredients are well mixed. Add chocolate chips and walnuts. It spreads over the shell. Bake until set, 25-30 minutes. Cool totaly in the pan before raising it (using foil to lift). Cut into 32 strips (8 rows by 4 rows).