These cost all the money in the world to make (not really) but are so very very very worth it! I suppose you could use that syrup that is a blend of maple syrup and carob fruit instead of pure maple syrup ,your wallet will be happier, but you would miss out on some of the maple flavour. These make a great special occasion bar, or holiday bake, unless your Gwyneth Paltrow you probably don’t have the money to buy maple syrup and masses of pecans every day but sometimes its nice to break the bank and make something extra special. My reason for breaking the bank is that I have just started work at hillside animal sanctuary’s vegan cafe again, its great to serve up vegan food to people who have never had it before and talk to the long time vegans as well. If you don’t have a new job to celebrate- or some other reason- then you should just make these to celebrate how awesome you are being all vegan and animal friendly.
Maple pecan filling:
1 cup vegan margarine
1/2 cup maple syrup
1 1/2 cups soft light brown sugar
zest of 1 orange
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
4 cups of roughly chopped peacans
4 tbsp coconut cream
Grease a 9×13″ tray bake pan and preheat the oven to 180c/360f. For the shortbread base, cream together the margarine and the sugar until light and fluffy, mix in the vanilla and add about half of the flour in and mix together with a spoon. Add in the rest of the flour and mix in- it may be easier to do it with your hands. Once mixed you should have a slightly crumbly mixture that can be pressed into your baking tray. Press the shortbread base into the pan so it covers the bottom and goes about 1″ up the sides of the pan. You can smooth it over with the back of a metal measuring cup or a spoon. Bake for about 8-10 minutes until just firm but not browned. Now to make the filling. Grab a large heavy bottomed pan and add the sugar, syrup, marg and zest, over a gentle heat melt and stir together. Once the marg is melted and incorporated bring the mixture to a boil and boil for about 3-4 minutes (I found it helpful to set a timer on my phone). Then remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla extract, coconut cream and pecans. Carefully pour into the brown sugar shortbread crust and spread out evenly, bake for 30 minutes until the filling is firmer and cool completely before placing in the fridge for a little while, so its nice and firm before you slice it. Slice and enjoy!