Maple Walnut Bourbon Bars: Rich, buttery shortbread based bars covered in maple syrup, bourbon, and walnuts. A fall treat.
I’m currently at battle.
With a bee.
I have a rule about bugs. If you are in my house you have to go…spiders killed on sight. Well, more like spiders seen, I scream frantically, then spray it with whatever is near…I’m really liking Lysol these days, and then try and kill it.
Then there are bees. I’m pro-bee in the sense that I appreciate their fine honey product and their contribution to the planet.
That does however not stop me from being allergic to them.
When outside, I do all the classics when I see a bee: the runaway, the flail the arms, and my go to bob and weave.
So yesterday the dogs were taking their sweet time outside and the next thing you know a bee flies into the house.
Okay, I think.
I’ll just leave the door open and it will fly out.
I tried to kind of lead it towards the door.
So I knew I had to kill it.
But I’m bad at that. Because well, my aim sucks…just ask my hockey team, and I’m a wimp when it comes to things like this.
Like I said, I had been using Lysol that the previous owner left behind to stun the spiders. So I figured okay…I’ll spray it.
Then I pictured it getting very, very angry and coming after me so I knew I needed a one two punch kind of thing.
Enter my electric mosquito racket. If you don’t have one I highly recommend them.
Of course in all of my going around trying to find stuff to kill the bee with…I lost the bee.
I had hoped that it just decided my place was too dirty to stay at…but that apparently didn’t deter him as I saw him go into my grocery bag (I had come in the the store and put the bag down when I let the dogs out).
I look in the bag. Nothing. Hmmm. I hit the bag with the racket. Nothing. I wasn’t stupid enough to put my hand in there so I knocked the bag over with the racket. That worked.
It started flying around again and I got my courage up to spray it. Once again the Lysol worked great causing the bee to fall to the ground. Side note, what is in Lysol…yikes.
The I proceeded to hit the bee with the electrified racket.
I repeatedly did it until it stopped making sparks.
It laid lifeless and I figured okay good. But then I remembered the zombie spider who came back to life to try and kill me and decided I best cover it with a glass and wait for my husband, the real bee killer to come home.
This morning when I got up with the dogs I realized the upside down glass was still there. I realized my husband had not discarded of him.
And then I noticed it wasn’t on the ground…it was climbing up the cup! WTF!!!!
So now I have a zombie bee.
It’s in there. It’s crawling all around.
It’s plotting it’s revenge.
We are at war.
You would think that since the bee is under the glass, I’m winning.
But I’m not.
Because the bee is winning the mental war. I keep having to go by and make sure super bee is not out of the cup.
So again, I wait until my husband comes home.
It’s going to be a long day of bee watch.
If you don’t here from me, you will know the bee won.
In other news, it is fall and as the new Starbucks drink confirms, maple is a flavor of fall.
I’m a big maple syrup fan.
I will point out that (and I hang my head in shame) when I eat pancakes I prefer imitation syrups like Mrs. Butterworth. I know. I know. But that is what we had as kids and so it’s more nostalgia than taste preference.
Before you think less of my mom and her imitation syrup, it was a cost thing. Giant bottle of Mrs. Butterworth for $2 vs tiny bottle of real maple syrup for $16. When you have three kids, two of whom are hearty eating boys, you go cheap.
But ALWAYS in baked goods splurge for the real stuff. ALWAYS.
This recipe calls for a good amount of syrup.
For baking, I prefer Grade B syrup. It has more flavor in my opinion.
These are similar to a pecan pie bar in texture.
You don’t have to use the bourbon but I always recommend getting a little booze in when you can. 😀
Wish me luck…I’m off to check on the bee.
Maple Walnut Bourbon Bars
For the crust:
1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. salt
For the filling:
1 cup pure maple syrup
2/3 cup brown sugar, packed
2 large eggs
2 TBSP bourbon (can omit)
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/4 tsp. salt
1 1/2 cups walnuts, chopped
For the crust:
Preheat oven to 350F.
Line a 8-x-8-inch pan with parchment and spray with baking spray.
Using a stand mixer with a paddle attachment beat together the butter and brown sugar until fully combined.
Add flour and salt and mix on medium until ingredients come together.
Press crust into prepared pan.
Bake crust for 20 minutes, until lightly brown.
For the filling:
Using the stand mixer with a clean bowl beat together the syrup, brown sugar, bourbon, eggs, vanilla extract, and salt.
Beat until fully combined.
Fold in walnuts.
Pour filling over baked crust.
Bake bars until golden brown, about 35-40 minutes.
Remove from oven and transfer to a wire rack to cool for 10 minutes.
Run the knife around the corners and sides to loosen.
Continue to let cool until at room temperature.
Cut into squares. I got 9.