So, with all due respect to Mark Zuckerburg, I don’t LOVE Facebook…there, I’ve said it. In fact, I am a reluctant user of Facebook.
The only reason I even have a Facebook profile is because of this blog; the whole social media link and all. But, personally, I just don’t feel the need to post every personal slight, sore throat, and political beef. I would also venture to say that even many folks who have loved Facebook for years have found it rather painful to be on it lately. I mean, there is such so much angst being played out across its pages right now.
So, at this point, are you wondering “What does this commentary on Facebook have to do with Pecan Sandies?”
These Pecan Sandies would not have happened were it not for a post on Facebook. It’s the kind of post that I like to see on Facebook, but that might get lost with all the other…stuff.
Several weeks ago my girlfriend Jane posted for all her friends on Facebook that her sister-in-law’s father had just harvested and shelled many pounds of organic pecans and that he was selling them, first come first serve. Now see, that’s my kind of Facebook post! (Along with all the cute panda baby and kitten videos that cause me to lose several hours per day.)
I jumped at the opportunity and committed to 3 pounds. And just like that, I had a bowlful of fresh pecans to do something with. All thanks to Facebook!
But before I go any further with the Pecan Sandies, I need to tell you a story about that beautiful wooden bowl holding those pecans. Isn’t it a lovely wooden bowl?
I found that wooden bowl while we were hiking in Austria 2 years ago. We began the day’s hike in a cute little village, which of course, had cute little shops.
I convinced myself and Terry that THIS BOWL would be the perfect trinket to remember my trip by. I mean…a wooden bowl from Austria! It would sit on my kitchen counter, filled to the brim with apples, oranges, and lemons. and I would gaze at it daily and remember our trip to Austria.
The only rub was that we had 10 miles of hiking ahead of us that day. Never one to be deterred, I said, ‘That’s fine, I’ll carry it in my backpack.” So I tucked this good-sized bowl in my already filled pack and trudged through the Austria Alps.
We arrived at our hotel that evening and I couldn’t wait to unpack and love on the bowl I had just carried for 10 miles.
Turning the bowl over to take in its Austrian craftsmanship, my eye caught on a little sticker which read… ‘Made in India’.
Needless to say, the family hasn’t stopped chuckling at my authentic, ‘Austrian’ wooden bowl.
But back to the pecans. Now that I had 3 pounds of them, there was nothing for it but to start some baking. AmIRight?
Not one to reinvent the wheel (I mean, who has time for that?), I used the Pecan Sandies recipe from February 2007 Food & Wine. This was the only recipe that I came across that advised you to refrigerate after mixing the dough; the claim being that this chilling resulted in a ‘light, delicate and crisp’ cookie. It sounded good to me.
My only alteration to this recipe was to dip the finished cookies in chocolate and sprinkle them with edible gold hearts (Valentine’s Day and all). But clearly, pecan sandies are a cookie that doesn’t ‘need’ dipping in chocolate to be perfect…they just are all on their own.
- 2 sticks unsalted butter at room temperature
- 1/3 cup sugar plus more for sprinkling
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup pecans coarsely chopped
- 4 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chips optional
- In a medium bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the butter with the 1/3 cup of sugar and the salt at medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
- Beat in the vanilla, then beat in the flour at low speed, scraping the side and bottom of the bowl, until the dough just comes together.
- Add the pecans and beat just until they are incorporated and lightly broken up.
- Divide the dough in half and form it into two 2-inch-thick logs.
- Wrap tightly in plastic and refrigerate overnight.
- Preheat the oven to 350'F.
- Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Working with 1 log at a time and keeping the other one chilled, cut the dough into scant 1/4-inch-thick slices, arrange them on the baking sheets and sprinkle them with sugar.
- Repeat with the second log of dough.
- Bake for 18-20 minutes, until the cookies are lightly golden around the edges and on the bottom, shifting the baking sheets halfway through.
- Let the cookies cool on the baking sheets for a few minutes, then transfer them to a rack to cool completely.
- If you will be dipping the cookies in chocolate, add the chips to the bowl of a double boiler and heat water over low heat.
- Stir chocolate chips until melted.
- Dip 1/2 of the cookie into the melted chocolate and sprinkle with glitter (optional)
- Place on rack to let chocolate harden.
- Keep in sealed container.
Whether or not you dress them up for Valentine’s Day or keep them simple with a dusting of sugar, these Pecan Sandies are an easy to make and a very delicious little treat, with or without a cup of tea.
And many thanks to my friend Jane and her extended family for making these pecans available.
OK…and to Facebook…for making it easy for Jane to let us know about the pecans.
If you’d like to file this away for your future reference, pin it to your Pinterest board.
Thanks again for spending a few minutes of your busy day with me today.
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