Sunday, September 21, 2008

National Pecan Cookie Day

Growing up I was spoiled with my parents home cooking and learned so much by helping out in the kitchen. I'm not sure what sparked our interest in entering contest, but I remember getting very interested when I was in high school. I was the Treasury person of our local 4H chapter and later became President of my school FHA my senor year of high school. We had a local Pecan Festival that we attended every year, my parents in the adult division and my brother and I in the youth until we were old enough to join the big players in the adult. So given my history with pecans of course I had to participate in National Pecan Cookie Day!

Butter Pecan Cookies
(Adapted from Martha Stewart)

3/4 cup pecans
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1/3 cup sugar, plus more for coating
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 cup all-purpose flour

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. On a baking sheet, toast pecans until fragrant, about 6 minutes. Let cool completely; finely chop.

With an electric mixer, cream butter and 1/3 cup sugar until light, about 1 minute. Beat in vanilla, salt, and flour, scraping down sides of bowl, just until dough comes together. Fold in pecans.

Separate dough into 12 pieces; squeeze dough to shape into balls. Roll in sugar. Place, 3 inches apart, on a baking sheet.
Gently flatten with the bottom of a glass (reshape sides if necessary). Sprinkle with sugar.

Bake until golden brown, rotating sheet halfway through, about 15 minutes. Sprinkle with more sugar. Cool cookies on a wire rack.

Makes 12.

Overall the cookies came out pretty tasty and I liked that they were quick to make. They also didn't take any eggs. I would recommend cooking them a little less the 30 minutes as mine got a little browner then I would have liked. They were very light and crisp and crumbly. It seems like how you shape them is how they're gonna come out so next time I might skip the glass pressing and just do cookie balls.

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