I must admit, I love to cook and bake. As a child, my sisters and I would make the usual things — chocolate chip cookies, brownies, pancakes, and crepes with our grandmother. Not from mixes, but from scratch. I am still that way, a total from-scratch kitcheneer. I’ve always tried to put a meal on the table — while working as a young, married woman; while raising children; and now as am empty nester. And since this horrible pandemic has spread throughout the country and we are all instructed to stay at home (which I hope you all are adhering to) my life in the kitchen has taken on a whole new meaning.
Yard clean-up is still at a minimum, depending solely on a decent temperature and sunshine, sometimes hard to get in March in Minnesota. Concentrated beekeeping is still a little ways off, so my time turns to the kitchen. Since I started self-quarantining in mid-February when our trip to St. Lucia was put off, I have much more time to turn to the cookbooks. And as of yesterday, our Governor has put in a two-week stay at home order. So, even more time at home.
My larder is always well stocked when it comes to baking ingredients, and my husband and I did a large shopping for meals that will last us for some time. I promise…I took no toilet paper!
Anyway, today, a continuation of a wet Saturday, kept me inside. My husband loves pecan sandies, a shortbread-like cookie with pecan flavoring. I had made Thomas Keller’s sandies with varying success — although delicious and more rustic looking, the dough was always a bit dry and hard to form the ball necessary to then “press” down to form the cookie shape.
So, today, I tried Ina Garten’s recipe. She adds more butter and has a finer grind of pecans added to the dough than does Keller’s recipe. No problem forming the balls…
Onto a parchment lined cookie sheet they went. I then pressed a whole half of a pecan into the middle of the cookie, and baked at 350 degrees for 22 minutes. After a short cooling time, we taste tested –Delicious! Buttery and full of pecan flavor! After our initial raiding of the cookies on the cooling rack, I transferred them to a much prettier plate.
For a little decoration, and if you like a little more sweetness, a sprinkling of powdered sugar always adds a little more pizaaz.
You can find the recipe in Ina Garten’s barefoot contessa Foolproof cookbook.
Thank you for reading! Enjoy your day and be safe!
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