Thursday, December 15, 2005

Savory Spiced Pecans

This is my annual Christmas treat. I make pounds of them and give them away, to universal acclaim. The recipe came out of a cookbook my grandmother used to give every woman in the family upon her wedding called "The Stuffed Griffin," published in 1976 by The Utility Club in Griffin, Georgia, a small-town volunteer organization. It's a hoot to read, but pretty useful too.


Heat the oven to 250 degrees. While the oven is preheating, melt a stick of butter (no substitutes) in a large baking dish (a lasagne pan is good but bigger is better) in the oven. When the butter is melted, stir in a half-cup of Worcestershire sauce. Add 1.5 pounds of pecan halves and stir well, until all pecans are coated in the liquid. Pieces would work too but aren't nearly so nice to look at. Place in the oven and stir every fifteen minutes; it should take an hour for the nuts to absorb all the liquid.

Spread the nuts on paper towels to drain and dry. Sprinkle with salt and cayenne to taste. I've found the nuts can stand a fair amount of both. Once they're cooler and dry to the touch, store them in ziploc bags or plastic storage containers with tight lids.

A note on nuts: I live in Boston where you can't find a decent pecan to save your life (I've had people point me to walnuts when I ask for pecans - I swear!), so I order them every year from McEachern Pecans, a small farm in south Georgia, pecan-growing capital of the world! Pecan season is in the fall, so order in November for this year's crop.

7 Comments:

Blogger Kalyn said...

This looks like a great recipe. Thanks.

8:37 AM  
Anonymous LisaSD said...

I bet your local Trader Joe's has tons of pecans for you! That's where I get mine...but I know the east and west coast stores do have different stuff...

1:43 AM  
Blogger Valyn said...

Lisa,
Thanks for the tip. I'll keep Trader Joe's in mind when I'm in a bind, but I generally find pecans at Trader Joe's are, at least here in Boston, ridiculously expensive and I have no idea how old they are. I much prefer ordering direct from the grower if I am smart enough to plan ahead.

2:56 PM  
Blogger Joe said...

Thanks for the mail order source!

10:10 PM  
Anonymous PecanWoman! said...

Texas pecans this year are sweet and fat and huge because of all the rains in the spring and summer.
Trust me on this!

10:44 PM  
Anonymous PecanWoman! said...

Texas pecans this year are sweet and fat and huge because of all the rains in the spring and summer.
Trust me on this!

10:44 PM  
Blogger Jan said...

I'm going to make this for Christmas snackies....my question is about how many cups of pecans? The bags I have don't give an amount. Sorry for the dumb question!

Thanks....this looks wonderful!

7:47 PM  

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