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Sunday, November 21, 2010

Maple Walnut Bars with Maple Fudge Icing





Here's another Grange Favorite for Fall:  Maple Bars with oats and walnuts.  Topped with my Maple Fudge Icing, they are just what you need after stacking firewood.

There's a full moon tonight, and the sky is amazingly clear.  To the left of Orion, Mars is a brightly flickering pink beacon.  This evening, we had dinner over in Manchester, and as usual, we were the only local people at the restaurant; everyone else drove for hours to be here.  I was reminded once again of how lucky we are to now live in Vermont.

And Vermont is about to get really cold.  The woods were booming with the sound of deer hunting today, and Thanksgiving is just days away.  The turkey is purchased and several cords of wood are stacked, but there is a sense of urgency, a need to get ready for winter.

We have a new French door to paint and fit on the dining room, weatherstripping to do, vegetable garden to mulch, summer tires to put away.  Time to prune the fruit trees, tie up the espaliers, and bring in the lawn furniture. Winter's coming.

With these homey considerations in mind, I made this batch of Maple Walnut Bars, using a recipe from the Vermont Grange Favorites cookbook from 1979.  These bars are the oatmeal-filled kind our moms used to make, moist and chewy.  I dressed them up with some smooth Maple Fudge Icing.  Try them and experience a late Fall day in Vermont.


Maple Walnut Bars with Maple Fudge Icing



In preparation:
  • Preheat oven to 350F
  • Spray an 8"x8" square pan with cooking spray. (Optional: a pan with a removable bottom, allows the bars to be lifted out together and plated)

Ingredients

1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup unsalted butter (1 stick), softened
1/2 cup Vermont maple syrup, grade B
1 egg
2/3 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup coarsely chopped walnuts
1 cup rolled oats (not instant)


For the Maple Fudge Icing:
1 cup Vermont maple syrup, grade B
1/3 cup light cream
1 1/2 teaspoons corn syrup
2 Tablespoons unsalted butter
1 Tablespoon light cream





Process

  1. In food processor bowl with blade attached, combine sugar, butter, and maple syrup.  Process until smooth.


  2. Add the egg and vanilla, process until combined.  Then add the flour, baking powder, and pulse until mixed in.  Add the nuts and oats.  Pulse until combined.



  3. Spread the bar mixture in the prepared pan.  Then bake at 350F for 30 minutes.  Watch the bars for the last ten minutes, to avoid over-browning.  Remove from oven and place pan on rack.


  4. While the bars are baking, make the Maple Fudge Icing.
    In a saucepan, combine the maple syrup, cream, corn syrup.  Boil.  Continue heating to  236F, then cool, undisturbed,  to around 120F.



  5. When almost cool, beat in 2 Tablespoons of softened Unsalted butter and 1 Tablespoon cream.  This will provide an icing consistency.

    Pour the warm icing on the cake still in the pan.  Spread to the edges with a spatula.




  6.  Allow to cool in the pan until the icing is set.  Remove bars from pan and serve







============================

Heidi's Sense of Snow:


Today, Heidi the Mountain Dog puppy saw snowflakes for the first time, bouncing down the bulkhead door.


She turned as she felt the tiny snowflakes hitting her fluffy fur.  Heidi has a lot to learn about snow.






8 comments:

  1. These bars are making me wish I had enough maple syrup to get baking. They look so good.

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  2. These maple walnut bars look delicious! Maple just screams New England Thanksgiving to me... which I will miss when my husband and I travel down to Austin for the holiday.

    Heidi sure is an adorable pup :).

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  3. Thanks M@BettyCrapper and Lauren! This is my favorite time of year, definitely. Heidi is so much fun, and actually pretty well behaved, most of the time. --Sue

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  4. These look simply beautiful and delicious!

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  5. I need to get myself a candy thermometer so I can make these!

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  6. I'll have to try this. These bars look so good.

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  7. This sounds wonderful. I love maple in any baked good. What sweet, lucious icing it would produce.

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  8. Thank you. I would to know more about the icing. Is this the same recipe as your great fudge? I would love to have a taste of New England, and your maple fudge would be perfect!

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Your feedback matters! So please leave a comment. I will do my best to answer all comments! Cheers, Sue