Pecans

13 September 2022

Pecans are nuts that are native to the southern United States and parts of Mexico. They grow on trees and can be eaten raw or used in cooking. They are mostly used in desserts, but can have other applications. They are high in monounsaturated fat, which is found to lower the levels of bad (LDL) cholesterol.

Pecan “Sandwich”

On the flat side of a pecan, spread ¼ teaspoon of either:

  • Anchovy paste
  • Bacon flavored cheese spread
  • Softened cream cheese

Top with another pecan half and you have a dainty snack or appetizer.

Pralines

Ingredients:

  • 1 ½ cups granulated sugar
  • 1 ½ cups firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1 cup evaporated milk
  • ¼ cup butter
  • 2 cups pecan halves, toasted
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:

  • Bring sugars and milk to a boil in a Dutch oven, stirring often. Cook over medium heat, stirring often, 11 minutes or until a candy thermometer registers 228° (thread stage).
  • Stir in butter and pecans; cook, stirring constantly, until candy thermometer registers 236° (soft ball stage).
  • Remove from heat; stir in vanilla. Beat with a wooden spoon 1 to 2 minutes or just until mixture begins to thicken.
  • Quickly drop by heaping tablespoonfuls onto buttered wax paper or parchment paper; let stand until firm.

Pecan Crusted Salmon with Lemon Glaze

Ingredients:

  • 4 salmon filets
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar, packed
  • 1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch

For the pecan crust

  • 1/2 cup pecan halves
  • 1/2 cup Panko bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley leaves
  • salt pepper,to taste

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Combine pecans, bread crumbs and parsley in the bowl of a food processor until mixture resembles coarse crumbs; season with salt and pepper.
  3. Dredge each salmon filet with pecan mixture.
  4. Melt butter in a large oven-proof skillet over medium high heat. Working in batches, add salmon to the skillet and sear both sides until golden brown, about 1-2 minutes per side.
  5. Place into oven and bake until fish flakes easily with a fork, about 10-12 minutes.
  6. To make the lemon glaze, combine honey, soy sauce, brown sugar, ginger, garlic, lemon juice and cornstarch in a small saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer until slightly thickened, about 3-4 minutes

Butter Pecan Chicken

Ingredients:

  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1/3 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/3 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried parsley

Directions:

  1. Preheat a large skillet over medium-high heat.  Season both sides of the chicken with salt and pepper.  Add 1 tablespoon oil and 1 tablespoon butter to the hot pan.
  2. Place chicken in the pan and cook for about 10 minutes on each side (depending on thickness).
  3. When the chicken is almost cooked through (about 150 degrees internal temp), remove the chicken from the pan, and add pecans, butter, chicken broth, brown sugar, honey, thyme leaves, and parsley.  Whisk together over medium heat, then add the chicken back to pan.
  4. Simmer gently for about, spooning the sauce over the chicken until the chicken is cooked through to 168 degrees and the sauce is thickened and bubbling. Serve over rice or mashed potatoes.

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