Charleston chews are one of my favorite things. No, not the candy. This is like a brown sugar blondie thing and it’s delicious! I always wait to have them when I’m in Charleston because I’ve been afraid of being disappointed in my own version. I don’t need to be afraid of that anymore! They weren’t as gooey in the middle as I’m used to, but I think I can solve that by baking for a few minutes less.
I researched a few recipes and read a few sections of the “How to Bake Everything” cookbook as I was trying to figure out the best way to make these. The only thing all of the recipes had in common was a stick of butter, a box of brown sugar, and a cup of chopped pecans. The amounts of eggs, flour, and everything else were all over the place. I decided on 1½ cups flour because 2 cups just seemed like a lot compared to everything else. I tasted the batter after mixing in 1½ cups of flour and decided that was enough (I don’t recommend doing this due to the raw eggs.) I think any more would have made them way too floury.
If you have parchment paper, I highly recommend using it to line your baking dish. These were very hard to get out of the pan, and I buttered it very well. Thankfully my Pampered Chef cake tester and releaser helped me work a miracle, and I was able to remove all of the bars.
½ cup butter, softened
1 box brown sugar (I used light brown, but dark brown might be better)
1 tsp vanilla
1½ cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 cup chopped pecans
Powdered sugar for dusting
Preheat oven to 350. Whisk together flour and baking powder, and set aside.
Cream butter and sugar. Add eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Add vanilla.
Gradually add flour, beating well until combined. Mix in chopped pecans.
Spread mixture into a 9×13 pan lined with parchment paper (see note in narrative above – I greased it well with butter because I ran out of parchment, and they were still almost cemented into the pan.)
Bake for about 20-25 minutes. Let cool, then cut into bars. Sprinkle with powdered sugar.