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Sunday, February 20, 2011

Pecan Chocolate Cake Bars (Easy things to do with cake mix #1)

This post is short and sweet. After Christmas, I was left with an excess of certain baking ingredients that I intended to use over the holiday but never did. Things like 4 boxes of yellow cake mix, 2 boxes of pumpkin bread mix, 1 box of red velvet cake mix, 2 bags of bright red candy wafers, 2 huge jars of marshmallow fluff, a box of graham cracker crumbs, bags of chopped pecans, gads and gads of bittersweet chocolate chips, and 3 cans of pumpkin. Now, my apartment is the size of a shoebox, which makes my closet about the size of a postage stamp. I just can't possibly horde baking ingredients forever. Well, actually...I probably could, but according to my horrified husband, I just can't possibly horde baking ingredients forever. So I need to use up my supplies, pronto.

Red velvet cake mix and red wafers are already gone, as Valentine's Day cupcakes with red molded chocolate decorations on top. I made the pumpkin bread last week, and sprinkled on some pecans. One box of yellow cake mix had a hole in the plastic holding the mix, so when I went to open up the box, it poofed all over my clothes. Said box is now in the trash, potential morph into baked goodness unfulfilled. So sad.

But this is the story of Yellow Cake Mix #2.

Yellow Cake Mix #2 has become Easy Things to do With Cake Mix #1. Still with me? Good. This yellow cake mix was destined for great things, although not the thing I thought it was destined for. I thought it was destined to become a yummy pecan pie bar, like a shortbread bar with a buttery crust.  But instead, it turned out to be more of a yummy pecan cake, and I'm advertising it as such.



My usual historical interludes have been more sporadic of late, and this post will have to fall in the interlude-less category, because I've already covered the topic of pecans quite extensively.

Take out that cake mix and reserve 2/3 C. To the remainder of the mix, add 1 stick of melted butter and one egg, mixing well to combine (I did this by hand, btw).

Take this dough, and pat it into the bottom of a sprayed 9"x13" pan, and partially bake it.

Meanwhile, combine eggs, vanilla, corn syrup, brown sugar, and the reserved cake mix in a bowl.

When the partially baked dough comes out, it should be slightly golden.

Sprinkle pecans and chocolate chips onto the base, then pour over the lovely filling.

It'll bake up nice and yummy.

And there you have a minimal-effort pecan cake with chocolate.

It easily cuts into squares, so I guess it could be called a "bar" -- it looks like one. But this has a softer texture, and I always think of bars as firm and dense...so I consider this a cake bar, if that makes sense.

Whatever it is, it's good!!

The original recipe can be found here, although I tweaked my version slightly.

Pecan Chocolate Cake Bars


Ingredients
  • 1 (18.25 ounce) package yellow cake mix
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 egg
For the filling
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1  cups dark corn syrup
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 cup chopped pecans add chocolate chips!!!
  • 2/3 cup yellow cake mix

Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease a 9x13 inch pan.
  2. Reserve 2/3 cup cake mix.
  3. Mix together remaining cake mix, margarine, and 1 egg. Pat in prepared pan.
  4. Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown.
  5. Beat together 3 eggs, vanilla, reserved 2/3 cup cake mix, corn syrup, and brown sugar. Pour on cake in pan. Sprinkle pecans on top.
  6. Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 30-35 minutes.



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