a seasonal delight worth rerunning: chewy noels

This week has been one big event, where the more you do the more you realize you have left to do. Suddenly I realized I had to finish off the gift shopping if I were to have any hope of getting my packages posted in time to arrive. This was enormously complicated by snow storms and single digit temperatures, which usually don’t happen in Utah until January when you’re ready and able to hibernate.

To top it all off, much of our seasonal social events took place this week.  Our grandson’s second grade holiday pageant took place on Tuesday, Wednesday was the kickoff of our traveling broadway season with The Wedding Singer, and we’re looking forward to our third Mormon Tabernacle show tonight (Friday) with historian David McCullough and singer Natalie Cole as the featured guests.

Whew! The good news is the gifts that required mailing were starting their cross-country journey by the end of yesterday! Hurrah! The bad news is there is still much to do. I resort, therefore, to posting a rerun. And I pledge to begin my Christmas shopping between Halloween and Thanksgiving next year–which could complicate any planning for NaPoBloMo in 2110!

This recipe was originally published in Wintersong in 2007 as a “page” rather than a post, and probably for that reason has not gotten much notice which–in thinking how delicious they are–is a travesty (I know, that’s a big word for such triviality but to me they’re that good).

Since around 1975 they’ve been Hubby’s favorite baked treat, and mine too maybe, considering there’s not a bit of chocolate in them. I often share them neighbors during the holidays, and face criticism from you know who that I’m giving away his favorites. What’s not to like? They’re made using ingredients most people routinely have in the kitchen, they take little effort to prepare, and I don’t even have to get the big mixer out. I can whip up a batch quickly, and they make the house smell heavenly while they’re baking. Have I convinced you to try them yet?

Finally, to all my Jewish friends and readers, Happy Hanukkah! You have my permission to call them Chewy Yummy Bars or a title of your choice :grin:.

* * * * * *  * * * * * * *


4 tablespoons butter or margarine
4 eggs
2 cups firmly packed brown sugar
¾ cup flour
2 cups chopped nuts (I use pecans, but walnuts are yummy too if you have them)
¼ teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350°F. Melt butter in two 9″ square pans, or one large cake pan (I pop mine in the oven while it’s preheating, being sure to keep an eye on it so it doesn’t scorch, while I measure out the rest of the ingredients).

Beat eggs slightly. Combine sugar, flour, soda and nuts, and stir into the beaten eggs. Then stir in the vanilla extract and mix well. Pour this mixture over the melted butter in pan(s). DO NOT STIR! Slide pan(s) into the oven and bake 30 minutes. (See how easy that was!?)

Turn out of pan(s) to cooling racks. Cut into diagonals or squares, and dust with confectioner’s sugar. Bon Appetit!

(The argument for using 2 smaller pans is that it makes them easier to turn out on the cooling rack after baking; however, you may need to decrease baking time if you use the smaller pans.)

9 thoughts on “a seasonal delight worth rerunning: chewy noels

    • She does have a lovely voice. My only reservation the day after is that the venue wasn’t perfect for her style. For clarification, see comment to Mage below.

  1. This will be a wonderfull one for the cookie exchange I’ve been roped into esp since I’m not a cookie maker.

    Your busy holiday activities make heart-warming reads.

    Am spending Christmas in Vegas this year at a couple of reunions.

    • A cookie exchange, perfect indeed. That was where my recipe came from–about a hundred years ago (seems like) in Connecticut. Enjoy!

    • Like a true southerner I can never be nutted out, especially if it means pecans! #1 nut next to almonds roasted and salted and throw in a few macadamia and I’ll be happy as a lark.

      David McCullough was regal. Natalie Cole was beautiful, but her forte is the more intimate showcase in a cafe or lounge setting, just as father’s was, as opposed to a humongous affair like the Tabernacle. She somehow lacked the physical “presence”. The fact the standing ovation of the evening went to the organist whose fancy footwork on Good King Wenseslas brought everyone to their own feet simultaneously prompts me to opine this. I’m now complaining, however, as all in all it was a wonderful show even if it lacked the magic of the one last year with tenor Brian Stokes Mitchell.

  2. Oh that recipe looks good! I just got home from seeing the movie, Julia and Julia. I loved it and wished I could eat that way. I did not get inspired to become a cook, just eat food with all that butter. Yummy! I probably gained a pound just watching the movie. Power of suggestion.

    • I know just what you mean, Silver! Monisha and I went to see that movie not long after it opened and we went late because she needed to get the kids to bed first. We were both salivating as we left the theater and the next day I went out for fresh tomatoes and a French baugette just so I could make Brushetta. For about a week I cooked as close to gourmet as I could, but it didn’t last. I loved the movie by the way.

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