Mud Hen Bars-a cookie crust layered with pecans, chocolate chips and marshmallows then topped with a brown sugar meringue!
So, our small town had some excitement the other day. I woke up to the sound of a helicopter flying around. Flying low. We don’t live near any airports. The only reason for a helicopter in our area is the police are looking for someone. It was 6 am. The girls are getting ready to head for school. I want to make sure it’s safe. Of course, I start checking facebook. I see lots of comments asking about the copters but no answers.
As I drive Grace to the Middle School, I see police cars lining the streets. (We live about a mile from the school.) The helicopter is hovering low close by. Something is definitely happening. We pull up to the school and the assistant principal is out front, answering questions, making sure the children go straight inside. I learned from him that the Waffle House had been robbed earlier in the morning, the suspect had fled on foot and was in the woods near the schools.
I have to tell you, I never felt safer dropping my child off at school. It was on lockdown-Code Red-the only door open was that front door. As I drove away, I saw teachers stationed outside the building, guarding the other locked entrances, presumably to report on any suspicious activity near the school. I counted 8 police cars, including the chief of police, on my drive back home.
Not even an hour later, the police announced they had the suspect in custody. Our little town is safe again. In later updates, it was reported that this suspect was also connected to 3 other armed robberies earlier that morning.
I’m proud of our police department, for how they handled the situation. For their presence in and about our town, every time I go out. I’m thankful those officers choose to put their lives on the line every day and that they protect our lives and property with professionalism and courtesy.
I mention all this because too often on the news, we only hear the bad about law enforcement. Sensationalized, meant to get a reaction. I’m not here to make any political statement but to remind us all, there are good stories out there too. There were a total of six law enforcement agencies involved in apprehending this suspect (plus a fantastic School Safety Plan), peacefully, without insult or injury to anyone.
The least I could do was show my appreciation by baking up a treat for them. Flipping through my recipe box, I knew these Mud Hen Bars would be perfect. How can you go wrong with pecans, chocolate chips and marshmallows?
Top it all off with a brown sugar meringue (take your time folding the sugar into your egg whites, you want to maintain the fluffiness) I find it easiest to just drop by teaspoonfuls on top instead of spreading.
Another great tip when slicing sticky bars. Spray a paper towel with cooking spray then wipe both sides of the knife blade with it after each cut. When you do start to have crumbs stick to the knife, take the time to wash and dry and you’ll always have perfect cuts.
I waited until the next day to deliver these bars to the police department. I wanted to make sure all the officers involved would be back on duty.
Connect with Chocolate, Chocolate and More!
- 1/2 cup butter, softened
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 large eggs, separated
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup chopped pecans (can use walnuts)
- 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 1 cup miniature marshmallows
- 1 cup brown sugar
- Grease a 9x13 baking pan or line with parchment paper, greasing any exposed areas of the pan.
- Beat butter and sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy. Add egg yolks and beat until blended.
- Combine flour, baking powder and salt. Add to butter mixture, just until blended. Mixture will be crumbly. Press crust into the bottom of prepared pan.
- layer chopped pecans, chocolate chips and marshmallows on top of crust.
- In a medium bowl (I use a large batter bowl) Beat egg whites on high speed until stiff peaks form with a hand mixer. Gently fold in brown sugar until combined. Spoon meringue on top marshmallows using a teaspoon, covering as much area as possible.
- Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 28-33 minutes, until meringue is cooked and a golden brown.
- Let bars cool completely before cutting. Store in an airtight container.
Now I need to make some treats for the school staff!
Here are more treats that travel well