Dear Rick, Do you remember the day we pedalled our bikes through the pecan orchard in New Mexico? We stopped to gather the fallen nuts in the ditch, and then worried we were stealing. The dusty desert stretched behind us and the mountains loomed before us. We’d been travelling for over a year, starting in San Francisco, the two of us new friends, bikes loaded with our gear, tent and sleeping bags. I think back how that road led us into the cool, green orchard, and how delighted we were.
Life with you since has been like that day. Side by side, we still pedal under the canopy of pecan tree bows talking and laughing about everything and nothing at all. You shade me from the harsh sun and wind, and refresh me with your laughter. I made these Pecan Macaroons for you, my darling. Now let me pour you a cup of tea. Happy 23rd anniversary.
I'd like to acknowledge Shirley Corriher's book Bake Wise. This Pecan Macaroon recipe is hers.
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MISE EN PLACE MACAROON DOUGH
- Line a baking sheet with parchment or baking liner.
- In a food processor with the steel blade, process the pecans into a fine powder, in three batches with 1 teaspoon (0.15 oz/4g) of the granulated sugar in each batch. Careful not to over process the pecans into butter.
- Measure out 6 cups (21 oz/593 g) ground pecans, brown sugar, and salt into a large bowl and set aside.
FINAL STEP FOR MIXING THE MACAROON DOUGH
- Add the egg whites and honey to the pecan and brown sugar mixture. With your hands, work the ingredients into an evenly mixed dough.
- Refrigerate for 30 minutes to distribute the moisture evenly.
BAKING THE PECAN MACAROONS
- Arrange a shelf in the center of the oven and preheat to 325ºF/163º C.
- Shape cold dough into free form pieces or small about 1-inch/2.5 cm or 15-19 gram balls.
- Lightly compress each cookie just enough to hold together. Over packing them will produce cookies that will be too firm and hard to bite when baked.
- Place on the baking sheet about one inch apart. These macaroons will not spread while in the oven.
- Bake for 20 minutes, until set and toasty.
- Allow to cool for 2 minutes, then remove to a cooling rack.
- When completely cooled, seal in an airtight container.
- These cookies will keep for quite a while.