My shipmate and I recently attended a pirate themed birthday party where the only person we’d met previously was the host. He was throwing the party for his lovely and uncannily talented pirate-tongued girlfriend. I wanted to bake something special for my (hopefully) new friends, and I didn’t feel my costume was complete without a treasure chest full of golden booty. Simple cookies wouldn’t please these pirates. Pecan rum bars wrapped in doubloon gold were the only option to keep me new hearties from feeding me to the fish.
I made my poor husband join me in pillaging the East Bay for gold foil and the perfect treasure chest. Avast, Michaels Craft Store carries gold foil and Ross, TJ Maxx or one of those scurvy infested stores had a box that would work as a treasure chest (if painted gold with spray paint from Michaels). It’s worth noting that H&M has everything one needs to outfit themselves in pretty authentic looking pirate garb, whether it be in traditional or modern piracy.
I may be a measly landlubber, but me thinks me new found maytes were rather pleased with the booty, although it may have just been the rum talking. In the end, the Cap’n and the Birthday Wench (sorry for calling you that, Dorothy Lou) were happy as clams and I wasn’t forced to walk the plank. Yo-ho-ho!
- all purpose flour - 2.5 cups
- brown sugar, lightly packed - 1 cup
- unsalted butter at room temperature - 1 cup (2 sticks), plus more for greasing pan
- salt - 1/2 teaspoon
- halved pecans - 2 cups
- maple syrup - 1/2 cup
- brown sugar - 1/2 cup
- unsalted butter at room temperature - 1 tablespoon
- eggs at room temperature - 2
- pure vanilla extract - 1 teaspoon
- spiced rum - 2 tablespoons
- coarse sea salt - 1 tablespoon
- Preheat oven to 375°F.
- Lightly toast the pecans for 7-8 minutes.
- Grease bottom and sides of 13x9-inch pan with room temperature butter and a pastry brush.
- Beat 1 cup butter and 1 cup brown sugar with electric mixer on low speed until creamy and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Whisk salt and flour together.
- Stir the dry ingredients into the creamed butter and sugar mixture. Mix just until the dough starts to come together, do not over mix.
- Lightly press the crumbly dough evenly in pan.
- Bake 12 to 14 minutes or until edges are golden brown and center springs back when touched lightly.
- Meanwhile, place the remaining brown sugar and maple syrup in a heavy saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring occasionally until the sugar has dissolved.
- Remove from the heat and add the butter, rum and vanilla.
- Allow the mixture to cool, then add the eggs and whisk until smooth. (Do not add the eggs while the syrup is hot or they will begin to cook)
- Add the pecans to the mixture and evenly pour the mixture over the baked cookie base. Bake for another 10 to 15 minutes, until the filling has set.
- Cool completely, about 1 hour.
- Sprinkle with a coarse sea salt.
- Cut evenly into 32 bars, 8 rows by 4 rows.
- Wrap in gold foil, and place inside a treasure chest if you are after that full pirate booty experience. Finally, enjoy with a refreshing rum and coke.