Crust: In a bowl, with an electric mixer, beat butter until creamy. Add brown sugar and vanilla and beat until the mixture is light. Add flour and beat at low speed until grainy, but do not beat too much. Incorporate pecans with a spoon. Press the dough uniformly in a pan of 13 x 9 inches (with greased foil paper and let exceed in each side). Cook in a preheated oven of 325F for 12 minutes or until the crust is lightly golden. Remove from oven and put the pan on a rack to let cool.
Filling: In a large bowl, with an electric mixer (use clean whisks), mix cream cheese, sugar and flour. Add eggs and beat at low speed until homogeneous. Incorporate, with a spoon : the cream, maple syrup and chopped pecans. Pour filling on the cold crust.
Cook in the preheated oven of 325F 35 to 40 minutes or until center of the filling is set. Remove from oven and put on rack. Let cool 1 hour. Cover with plastic wrap and put in fridge at least 4 hours or until filling is cold. Unmold delicately and cut in squares. Garnish each square with a candied pecan.
Candied Pecans: In a large skillet with a thick bottom, mix delicately all ingredients. Cook at medium-high heat, shaking the skillet from time to time, until sugar begins to melt (DON'T STIR). Reduce at low heat and keep cooking, stirring often with a wooden spoon, until sugar is golden. Remove from the heat and spread the pecans on a baking sheet with greased foil. Let cool completely at room temperature. Break in indivudual pecan. (You can prepare the pecans in advance and put in a metal container, separating each stage with wax paper. They will keep up to 5 days at room temperature.).
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Pecan-Maple Cream Cheese Squares (cont.)