Maple Bourbon Walnut Bars

The honey bourbon! It’s back!

But of course it is — if there’s anything I adamantly believe in, it’s that everything is better with booze. Yes, everything.

Boring pasta sauce? A dash of wine will fix that! Want a better tasting bread? Add a bit of beer to your dough! After dinner coffee? Break out the liqueur! Painful and awkward social gathering? Nothing a few drinks won’t fix!

Riiiiight.

I’ll stop there, lest I get another call from my mother (who reads my blog) and a lecture about alcoholism. But I’m not an alcoholic — gawd, mom, really! — and I say this with confidence because alcohol is something I only indulge in once or twice a week, and especially I only drink hard alcohol a few times a year — a YEAR!

That’s why getting a new bottle of liquor excites my inner 10-year-old!

Y’know… uh. If my inner 10-year-old self was old enough to buy booze and smart enough to know how to cook and bake with it.

Ahem. I swear I’m not an alcoholic — just a booze hound! Totally different, thaaaanks.

I’ve been having way too much fun playing with my JD Tennessee honey bourbon!

So far it’s been added to pumpkin honey bourbon cheesecake, pumpkin bread pudding, pumpkin pie, apple compote (made it at school) and, now, maple bourbon walnut bars. It’s totally perfect for fall baking, but that’s just me being a broken record.

Oh oh oh — and I’ve finally updated my blog roll page. It was an overhaul long overdue, but, y’know — busy school and work times.

Use your magical clickity mouse and head on over to check out the foodie love, people.

Networking makes the world go ’round. Networking and booze. Harr harr harr!

Maple Bourbon Walnut Bars

*adapted from Marie Simmons

Ingredients

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) salted butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup maple syrup
  • 4 tablespoons bourbon
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts

Glaze

  • 1/2 cup icing sugar
  • 2 tablespoons bourbon
  • dash of cinnamon

Directions

Preheat the oven to 350°F/175°C.

Line a 9 x 13 inch baking pan with parchment paper, or grease with butter and sprinkle generously with flour. Evenly distribute about half of the chopped walnuts over the bottom of the pan. Reserve the rest for later.

Sift together the flour and baking powder. Set aside.

Cream the butter and sugar together until smooth and creamy.

Beat in the vanilla extract and eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition.

Add the bourbon and slowly mix in the maple syrup in a steady stream — at this point the batter might form small clumps and appear to curdle, but it’ll smooth out when the flour is added.

Gently mix in the sifted flour in 3 additions, then fold in the remaining chopped walnuts.

Spread the batter evenly over the bottom of the prepared pan, and then bake for 30 ~ 35 minutes, or until the edges are browned and a knife inserted into the center comes out clean.

Allow to cool in the pan for 1 hour before carefully removing — turn the bar sheet over onto a cutting board so that bottom becomes the top.

Mix together the icing sugar, bourbon, and cinnamon to make a thin glaze and drizzle it over the upside-down sheet. Cut into bars of desired shape and size and enjoy!

These soft, kinda cakey, kinda chewy, totally nutty bars are best enjoyed the day-of taste even better if you wrap em up tight in plastic wrap and let their flavour develop overnight, and can be kept in an airtight container for up to 3 days. Yum!

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9 thoughts on “Maple Bourbon Walnut Bars

  1. I like the way you’ve done the glaze in a drizzle, rather than slathering it all over the top. Unfortunately, if I made these I’d have to eat the whole pan myself — some teetotalers in the family.

    • Christine says:

      I can understand teetotaling when it’s related to alcohol related problems, but otherwise — WHYYYYYY? Booze is to sweets like salt is to savory — especially since baking extracts are alcohol, too!

  2. A Tablespoon of Liz says:

    yes yes yes, I agree with you 100% that everything is better with a little alcohol. These look amazing!

  3. daisy says:

    I don’t even drink at all, but I’m ready to get me some bourbon!!! I’m one of those Asians who doesn’t have the enzyme to break down alcohol so I turn beet red, get hives, and itchy when I drink, but I do like to booze up my desserts….Kahlua, Frangelico, Grand Marnier, and now, I must get to the liquor store for bourbon.

    Thanks, alot Christine! Now I’m starting to sound like a booze hound, too. 🙂

    • Christine says:

      Bourbon is great! If you can splurge, try to get your hands on a bottle of Knob Creek — it’s my favourite thing to order on the rocks (especially when someone else is paying)! 😉

  4. Susan says:

    Um, YUM. And that’s coming from one boozehound to another. 😉

  5. Unlike most high school teens, I’m not an alcohol drinker. I much prefer it in my food 🙂

    • Christine says:

      Ohhh ho ho! You’ll see the light eventually. I used to just drink sickly sweet cocktails when I was a kid, but discovering wine totally changed the way I drink. Of course, if you’re still in high school, that’ll have to wait. 😉

  6. I love the decorations on top! They look fantastic.

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