Does anyone have the recipe for Chattanooga Chew-Chew bar cookies?

bakery background
bakery background

We begin this morning's Exchange with sweetness of various kinds. A.E. is looking for guidance on "the safest and best-tasting sugar substitutes. Which of these work best for baked goods?" (Remember, too, that a reader is looking for a coffee cake made with sugar substitute.)

Yeast of the Ridge, on the other hand, is looking for a sugar-full recipe: "The recipe is called Chattanooga Chew-Chews, a bar cookie that made a large quantity and was good cut in small squares for a party."

Here too is a mention of sweet things. A local Instagrammer has asked for help in canceling the effects of fried chicken and milkshakes. She favors simple recipes with ingredients like nuts, fruits, vegetables and fish. But then there's chocolate, "and I do require it." So if you've got simple secrets for the ingredients above, as well as the most healthful way to consume chocolate, please send them here and I will pass them on.


Barbara Mann and Lennis DuBan, who happen to rhyme, both sent answers to the request for sugared pecans, and thus give you three options. Ms. Mann's came first.

Sugared Pecans

2 cups sugar

1 cup water

4 cups shelled pecans

Heat oven to 300 degrees. In a medium-size pot over medium heat, combine sugar and water, and dissolve. Add nuts, and continue cooking, stirring frequently, until nuts are completely sugarcoated and sugar is crystallized and no syrup left. Pour mixture onto ungreased cookie sheet, spreading and separating nuts as much as possible. Bake until nuts are golden, 12 to 15 minutes, stirring at 5-minute intervals.

This recipe is also excellent with peanuts.

Ms. DuBan's two submissions add spirits and spice. She explained, "I thought I would share what I've been making this past Christmas. The first one is not 'maple bourbon' but uses whiskey, so I thought it might sub for the requested recipe."

Whiskey Candied Pecans

1/4 cup brown sugar

1/4 cup granulated sugar

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1 egg white

1 1/2 tablespoons whiskey

4 cups pecan halves (about 1 pound)

Heat oven to 275 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat. Set aside.

Stir together the brown sugar, granulated sugar and salt in a small bowl.

In a mixing bowl using a hand mixer, or in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the egg white until stiff peaks form.

Stir in the whiskey, and then carefully stir in the pecan halves until coated. Sprinkle the sugar mix over the pecans, and stir until well-coated.

Spread the pecans in a single layer over the prepared baking sheet.

Bake in the preheated oven for 45 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes until the pecans are toasted and fragrant.

Remove from the oven, and allow to cool. The pecans will be crunchy when cool. Once completely cool, store the pecans in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a week.

Superlatives are appropriate here. Ms. DuBan wrote, "This next one has become my husband's addiction. It would be great on a salad."

Candied Pecans

1 large egg white

1 tablespoon water

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 cup granulated sugar

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 pound pecan halves

Heat oven to 250 degrees. Line a rimmed 18- by 13-inch baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a large mixing bowl, vigorously whisk egg white with water and vanilla until very frothy.

In a separate small mixing bowl, whisk together sugar, cinnamon and salt.

Add pecans to egg white mixture, and toss until evenly coated.

Pour sugar mixture over pecans, and toss until evenly coated.

Pour coated pecans onto prepared baking sheet, and spread into an even layer.

Bake in preheated oven 1 hour, stirring every 15 minutes. Allow to cool, then store in an airtight container.


Thank you, Susan Peel, for two vegan recipes made to go together - a congenial pair.

Creamy Vegan Potato Soup

5 cups diced potatoes

1 cup diced onions

1 cup chopped celery

1 cup chopped carrots

1 cup water

1 tablespoon chicken-like seasoning (such as McKay's)

1 teaspoon salt or to taste

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

1/2 teaspoon basil

1 recipe of Cream Sauce (recipe follows)

Cook vegetables in 1 cup water with the seasonings, simmering until tender.

Blend Cream Sauce ingredients until very smooth, about 2 minutes.

Add Cream Sauce to the cooked vegetables, and stir gently while bringing to a boil to thicken, adding more water or salt as needed.

Vegan Cream Sauce

1 cup raw cashews

2 cups water

1 teaspoon salt or to taste

2 teaspoons onion powder

1 tablespoon chicken-like seasoning (such as McKay's)

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

2 tablespoons cornstarch

1 1/2 cups more water (to be added after blending)

Place all ingredients in blender, and blend on high for about 2 minutes, until smooth.

Pour into a saucepan. Add 1 1/2 cups water into blender, and blend, then add to mixture in the pan. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly as it thickens to keep it from lumping. As soon as it thickens, remove from heat.

Note: If you do not have a powerful blender, i.e. Vitamix, you may want to soak the cashews for 2 to 3 hours or overnight in the fridge. This will soften them and create a creamy texture versus one that is gritty.


We are hot on the trail of a pot roast made with coffee and sesame seeds. The coffee part is still missing, but Jon McKeachie sent a recipe laced with sesame seeds along with other interesting ingredients like radishes and fresh ginger. Here it is.

Sesame Ginger Pot Roast

5-pound pot roast or similar cut of beef that can be used to make pot roast

2 whole white onions, medium-diced

2 whole carrots, peeled and medium-diced

1 daikon radish, peeled and diced (optional)

2 pounds of quartered russet potatoes

2 teaspoons fresh minced garlic

1 teaspoon fresh minced ginger

2 tablespoons of sesame seeds (you may sprinkle in at the end)

Salt and pepper to taste

Water or beef stock to cover meat

In a large pot or crock-pot, place the meat, onion, carrots, radish (if using), potatoes, garlic and ginger. Then add water or beef stock to cover the meat and some vegetables. Onions may float, but that's all right.

Sprinkle in sesame seeds, and cook on low until meat pulls apart with a fork and potatoes and carrots are tender, 4 to 6 hours. Add salt and pepper to taste when almost done.

Here's an optional step for more flavor. To begin this recipe, you may put a teaspoon of toasted sesame seed oil in a skillet and heat on medium. Cook onions, carrots, radish, potatoes, garlic and ginger until onions are translucent. Be careful not to burn garlic. Add to meat, and cook as directed above.

Once again you all have been good company. Keep that up, please.


* Advice on sugar substitutes

* Chattanooga Chew-Chew bar cookies

* Simple recipes with nuts, fruits, vegetables, fish

* Healthful chocolate


Fare Exchange is a longtime meeting place for people who love to cook and love to eat. We welcome both your recipes and your requests. Be sure to include precise instructions for every recipe you send.

Mailing address: Jane Henegar, 913 Mount Olive Road, Lookout Mountain, GA 30750


photo Jane Henegar