Mint Julep Bars #SundaySupper

In honor of the American Mardi Gras tradition celebrated in New Orleans, let’s celebrate with a traditional Southern drink turned into a decadent dessert. Mint Julep Bars are the perfect addition to your Fat Tuesday party. 
 
Mint Julep Bars from The Girl In The Little Red Kitchen
 

 Grab your beads, costumes and masks.  Break out the fatty foods, the celebration cocktails and your King cake.  It’s time to celebrate Fat Sunday.  Yes that’s correct, we are having a Mardi Gras party #SundaySupper style and that means bringing it to you two days earlier. 

Have you ever been down to New Orleans for Mardi Gras? I’ve never been, actually I’ve never visited New Orleans period. It’s on my travel to-do list for the immediate future.   Mardi Gras or rather Carnival is really the party of the year, thousands of people descend not only upon New Orleans but to Rio, Cologne, Venice and many other countries around the world to celebrate. 

This celebration isn’t just an excuse to eat and drink but is associated with the day before Ash Wednesday.  Eating decadent foods plays a large part since lent begins right after but for many it’s the chance to enjoy good food, company and the elaborate parades. 

Mint Julep Bars from The Girl In The Little Red Kitchen

With New Orleans being the largest and most well known Mardi Gras party it was pretty easy to come up with a fun idea to make today.  New Orleans has a rich culinary history bringing us creole and cajun cuisine.  While I love to eat it, I’d rather leave making it to the experts.  There is an art to making gumbo and frankly I’d rather share my art of taking a cocktail and turning it into a dessert. 

I think most of us associate mint juleps with the Kentucky Derby but when I was searching Mardi Gras cocktails this was listed alongside Hurricanes and Sazeracs.   We all know I love bourbon so I was sold from the get go. 

These bars don’t pack much of a bourbon punch but they are packed with plenty of mint.  Whatever you do, don’t skip out on the fresh mint in the shortbread.  It adds just the right amount of freshness to keep the medicinal mint taste away that you can sometimes get with extract. 

Mint Julep Bars from The Girl In The Little Red Kitchen

 

5.0 from 3 reviews
Mint Julep Bars #SundaySupper
 
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 9
Ingredients
For the bars:
  • ¾ cup granulated white sugar
  • ¼ cup fresh mint
  • 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) slightly frozen unsalted butter, grated
For the bourbon simple syrup:
  • ¼ cup granulated white sugar
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 2 tablespoons bourbon
For the glaze:
  • ¼ cup confectioners sugar
  • ½ teaspoon peppermint extract
  • 1 tablespoon heavy cream
Instructions
  1. Heat your oven to 350 degrees and grease and line an 8X8 baking pan with parchment paper.
  2. Place the sugar and fresh mint in a medium bowl and using a pestle or cocktail muddler, muddle the mint with the sugar until the mint begins to breakdown and the sugar has the consistency of wet sand. Remove any large pieces of mint and stems.
  3. Mix in the flour, salt and grated butter. Combine until it comes together (the mixture will be crumbly) and transfer to the prepared baking pan.
  4. Press down firmly so the dough is in an even layer and bake for 25 minutes or until the edges are a light golden brown.
  5. While the shortbread is baking prepare the bourbon syrup. In a small saucepan over medium heat dissolve the sugar and water. Stir in the bourbon and let it cook with the sugar and water for about 30 seconds. Remove from the heat and let cool slightly.
  6. Once the shortbread is fully baked remove from the oven and while still hot prick all over with a the tines of a fork.
  7. Using a pastry brush, brush the top of the shortbread with the bourbon syrup. Make sure the first layer has dissolved until brushing again. Repeat until all the syrup is finished.
  8. Let the bars cool completely in the pan before removing and cutting into squares.
  9. In a small bowl whisk together the confectioners sugar, peppermint extract and heavy cream to form a thick glaze. If the glaze seems too thick, add a little more heavy cream 1 teaspoon at a time.
  10. Drizzle over the cut bars and let set for 10 minutes before serving.
  11. Store in an airtight container.

Mint Julep Bars from The Girl In The Little Red Kitchen

 

Let’s take a look and see what the rest of the #SundaySupper contributors are bringing to the Mardi Gras party.

Cocktails & Other Beverages:

Appetizers:

Main Dishes:

Side Dishes:

Desserts:

 
 
Sunday Supper MovementJoin the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter on Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm ET. Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. Check out our #SundaySupper Pinterest board for more fabulous recipes and food photos. Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement

 

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62 thoughts on “Mint Julep Bars #SundaySupper

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  12. Courtney @ Neighborfood

    Love this idea Susan. I never knew Mint Juleps were a popular Mardi Gras treat, but I can totally get behind a sweet, minty, bourbon drink! These bars are a nice summery pick up for the snow we’re getting today (AGAIN!). Is it spring yet?!

    Reply
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  15. Shaina

    My first night out in New Orleans, the Mint Julep was the drink recommended to me when I asked for a “traditional New Orleans cocktail.” I loooved it, so I’m sure I would devour a plate of these bars in no time!

    Reply
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  19. Stefanie @ Sarcastic Cooking

    Oh yes!!! I am all about Fat Tuesday! If you are starting Fat Tuesday on Sunday can I eat bad for you but totally awesome foods until the end of Tuesday? Starting with these!!! Shortbread and bourbony minty goodness, amaze!

    Reply
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  21. Joanne

    I went to NOLA the week after Mardi Gras last year, and it was still a crazy party..so I can’t imagine what it’s like to actually BE THERE during Mardi Gras. There is definitely a lot of emphasis on cocktails there, though I’m sad to say I didn’t have a mint julep! Well, I’ll just have to try it in bar cookie form!

    Reply
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  23. Kim Beaulieu

    I freaking love everything about this recipe Susan. It’s so unique and perfect for the holiday. I adore any holiday that starts with the word “fat”. You just know it’s going to be epic. I have my stretchy pants all ready for tomorrow. Bring on the madness of all things Fat Tuesday. I’m so glad we started planning early. Copious amounts of paczki’s are awaiting, I saved an entire batch for tomorrow. Kiana filled them with everything from peach to chocolate. She even did some with fluff. I may need to be rolled into my bed at the end of the day. Ha.

    Reply
  24. Nancy @ gottagetbaked

    Susan, you’re the queen of dessertifying boozy drinks and I love ya for it! These bars are awesome. You know how much I love bourbon and mint juleps are one of my favourite drinks. Having it in a yummy cookie bar form will be dangerous for my waistline since I’ll be eating the entire pan myself 😉

    Reply
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