6 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1/3 cup light corn syrup
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 tablespoon bourbon or rum
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 large egg
1/2 cup semisweet or milk chocolate chips (optional)
2 cups pecans, coarsely chopped
Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 9x9 baking pan with foil leaving extra foil to hand over the sides for easy removal of the bars. Using baking spray with flour, coat the bottom and sides of foil-lined baking pan; set aside.
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, salt, light brown sugar and pecans. Using a pastry blender or a long-tined fork, cut cold butter into flour-pecan mixture until the mixture resembles coarse cornmeal. Note: a few small chunks from the pecans may appear, this is ok. Pat mixture evenly in the prepared pan.
Bake for 20 minutes or until crust is light brown and springs back when lightly touched.
Meanwhile, in a separate bowl, mix together melted butter, light brown sugar, corn syrup, vanilla, bourbon, salt and egg until just combined.
Pour filling mixture over prebaked crust and evenly sprinkle chocolate chips and pecans on top.
Bake for 22 to 25 minutes or until cracks begin to form across the surface.
Allow to cool in pan for 20 minutes before transferring to a wire rack for additional cooling, up to 40 minutes.
Once cooled, use a serrated knife to cut into bars. Serve at room temperature. ENJOY!