Preheat oven to 325°. Butter a nonreactive 8-inch square baking pan. In the bowl of a food processor or by hand, finely chop pecans. Add melted butter, flour, and brown sugar, and process or blend with your fingers to form a crumbly mixture. Press the crust into prepared pan, and bake 25–30 minutes until golden brown.
Whisk together the eggs and sugar. Stir in lime juice, flour, and lime peel, if using, and mix well until smooth. When crust is baked, pour the lime custard into it, and return the pan to the oven. Bake for about 20 minutes, until the topping is firm to the touch. Cool in the pan for about 1 hour. Cut into 12 pieces, and gently press a pecan half into the center of each piece, if desired. Remove the bars with a spatula to a serving plate or storage container.
Note: Wash and finely grate the peels of 3 or 4 limes before juicing them. If the limes are hard, soften them before peeling by rolling them on a counter with the heel of your hand, tossing them in a game of catch with your children, or throwing them on the floor. No kidding! They’ll yield more juice.
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