Since its early days on the frontier of American settlement, the Laurel Highlands has long been a meltingpot of different cultures and cuisines. We're honoring this heritage with Taste of the Highlands, a celebration of the foods and flavors of our region. Join us each week as we highlight recipes tied to famous landmarks, historical events and products made right here in the Laurel Highlands.
What better way to start than by honoring Elsie Henderson, who was cook, baker and meal planner at Frank Lloyd Wright's Fallingwater from 1947-63. All of Henderson's recipes and more are contained in The Fallingwater Cookbook, an exquisite collection of fine and casual dining recipes from the renowned cook, along with some of her favorite memories from her time with the Kaufmanns.
Honey Maple Almond Bars
Our first recipe is something both short and sweet to get you started. These honey maple almond bars, a favorite of Fallingwater Café, are simple to make but loaded with rich flavors and textures. Be the talk of the next party when you whip up this quick and delicious recipe that is perfect for sharing!
A few notes before you get started:
- The recipe calls for almonds, but any nut of your choice will do! Peanuts, pecans, cashews or even pistachios will all work.
- This recipe was designed for a half sheet tray. You can either make the recipe as-is to bake in two 8 x 8 pans, or scale the recipe in half and bake in one 8x8 square baking dish.
- Bonus points for using local maple from Somerset County like Brantview Farms or other great maple camps.
- 1 1/2 C chilled butter
- 1 C confectioner’s sugar
- 4 C all-purpose flour
- 2 large eggs
- 1 1/2 C brown sugar
- 1/2 C honey
- 1/4 C maple syrup
- 3/4 C chilled butter
- 1 Tb vanilla extract
- 4 C slivered almonds
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
- Combine the 1 1/2 cups butter and confectioner’s sugar in a food processor. Pulse 20 seconds.
- Add the egg and flour and process just until a dough forms.
- Divide the dough in half. Press each half onto the bottom and halfway up the sides of TWO greased/lined 8x8” square pans.
- Bake 15 to 20 minutes or until golden.
- Bring brown sugar, honey, maple syrup and the last 3/4 C butter to a boil.
- Stir frequently and boil exactly 2 minutes.
- Take off the heat and add the almonds and vanilla.
- Pour the mixture into each baked crust, dividing evenly, then spread evenly with a spatula and return to the oven to bake another 20 minutes. The tops should be bubbly.
- Remove from oven, cool and cut into bars.
"The Fallingwater Cookbook" is available online for purchase in the Fallingwater Museum Store. Thanks to Fallingwater for permission to reprint this recipe and accompanying photos.
Did you make this recipe or buy the cookbook? Post to social media and be sure to tag us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to share your creations! Check back weekly as we unveil more recipes from Taste of the Highlands.