I love it when it’s pecan pickin’ time and this year is one of them! Right in the middle of my front yard is a pecan tree, and I’ve collected close to 100 pounds of pecans. I feel so proud – like a farmer who’s had a bountiful harvest. Except I didn’t have to sweat or toil or wear overalls or really do any work at all to make it grow and produce.
But I do have to put in some labor of love when it comes to collecting them, shelling them, and roasting them in the oven. But I enjoy that whole process because at the end I have pounds and pounds of roasted pecans to give as edible gifts!
So first step. Pick the pecans off the ground. This part is fun because since the pecans like to hide in my grass, I feel like I’m participating in an Easter egg hunt! It’s addicting. I’m out there on my hands and knees and I cannot stop until I feel like I’ve found them ALL.
After I collect the pecans, it’s time to get crackin’. The last time I harvested pecans, I hand cracked them all myself. Crazy, right? This time, I had a pecan shelling business do most of the work for me. See, I’m getting smarter as I get older.
Once the pecans are shelled, it’s time to roast them!
Here is the recipe I use:
2 egg whites
1 tablespoon vanilla
1 pound pecan halves
1 cup white sugar
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
In a mixing bowl, whip together the egg white and water until frothy. In a separate bowl, mix together sugar, salt and cinnamon and pour into Ziploc bag.
Add pecans to egg whites, stir to coat the nuts evenly. Remove the nuts and pour into Ziploc bag with the sugar mixture. Seal and shake bag until pecans are coated evenly.
Spread the nuts out on baking sheet and bake for 1 hour. Stir every 15 minutes.
Oh, the heavenly smell the comes from your oven. You need to experience it for yourself.
The roasted pecans end up tasting just as good or better as the ones you can buy at the arts festival or at the state fair. Absolutely delicious! Most people only get the chance to eat roasted pecans when they go to these types of events – once a year – so you’re really giving them a nice treat when you give them homemade roasted pecans.
Package it up all pretty, and you have an amazing edible gift that will surely impress their taste buds.
Go nuts with this gift idea!