Thursday, 28 March 2013

Welcome to "Little Pieces of Mee"

Welcome to my blog "Little pieces of mee".

I want to use this blog to share some of the things that I enjoy - which include cooking, card making and spending time with my three little ones and my husband.

I have a daughter who is just about to turn 5, another daughter who is almost 3, and a little boy who is 9 months old.

Life in our house can get pretty busy between school runs, work, kids activities and life in general. But spending time in the kitchen creating something yummy for my family and friends is something that I love to do. For me it's not just the end result that matters to me, its also the process of creating something special. Sometimes my husband offers to finish off what I'm doing (like spooning batter into cupcake cases - although I think he just wants to help so he can make sure there's plenty of batter left on the spoon for him to lick) but I usually say no because I want to finish the process myself.

Today I had mothers group at my house and wanted to cook something yummy for my guests. But its been a busy week (between a car break down, a phone and internet line that didn't work for almost a week, and a new computer to set up, not to mention preparation for a 5th birthday) and the house was looking very untidy. So in my limited time between getting things ready for school drop off, I needed to choose between baking and tidying the house. Guess which one I chose? That's right, I baked something yummy. Luckily, before everyone arrived I had a few spare minutes to do a bit of tidying up as well so the house wasn't too bad ...

Anyway, I found a recipe for Pecan Bars on the internet a few weeks ago when I was looking for something else (I can't remember what, maybe birthday cake ideas), and thought that I would test these out today. I got some pretty good comments on the finished result, so I thought I'd share the recipe here.

The base was a bit crumbly (its like a thick biscuit base) but the topping was a nice and chewy and had loads of flavour with the pecans and coconut. I used shredded coconut as that is what I had in the cupboard, and I also substituted golden syrup for the dark corn syrup.

Original recipe from Martha Stewart via Sweet & Saucy


Pecan bars


225g unsalted butter
1/2 cup confectioner’s (powdered) sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups plain flour
2 tablespoons plain flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
2 large, room-temperature eggs
1 1/2 cups packed light brown sugar
1 tablespoon dark corn syrup
2 cups pecans, coarsely chopped
1 cup sweetened flaked coconut
To make the crust, use the paddle attachment on a stand mixer to beat together butter, confectioner’s (powdered) sugar, and salt until light. On low speed, beat in flour until the mixture formed a mass. Transfer the dough to a 9 x 13-inch pan and use a sheet of plastic wrap to press it evenly into the bottom of the pan. Discard the plastic wrap and bake the crust at 190°C until golden (25 minutes).

While the crust bakes, make the filling. In a small bowl, whisk together extra flour, extra salt, and baking powder. Using an electric mixer, beat eggs with brown sugar and dark corn syrup until light. Fold the flour mixture into the egg mixture, followed by pecans (coarsely chopped) and coconut.

When the crust has finished baking, gently spread the filling over it and bake until the filling is set (20 minutes). Immediately after the pan comes out of the oven, run a metal spatula around the edges and then set the pan on a wire rack to cool. Once cool, cut the bars into 24 servings.