'These pecan nuts are so good, they're not at all bitter,' Peter commented as he munched into a larger-than-normal serving of green beans with pecans. 'That's because they've been candied and they are most likely super fresh,' I replied, adding that nuts can turn rancid and bitter very quickly. 'Oh?! Well, you've got to make them then,' he said, nodding his head and pointing at the plate with absolute determination.
We were dining out while in Noosa on the Sunshine Coast as part of our latest getaway, and the side of beans with sweetened pecans was served with the twelve hour slow-cooked lamb I mentioned in my recent slow-roasted lamb recipe post. I promised Peter that I'd make my version of the lamb again, and the pecans, as soon as we were back at home. What can I tell you, I do like to keep my wonderful man happy.
I also like to serve lamb with a selection of simple and delicious vegetable dishes and, given that the oven was going to be switched on for several hours, I threw a few medium-sized sweet potatoes (still in their jackets) onto a baking tray and roasted them until the were just tender. Meanwhile I created my own recipe for maple coconut pecans and popped those into the oven for a few minutes too, (along with some baby truss tomatoes on the vine).
Once the sweet potatoes had cooled, I peeled and sliced them, arranged them on a serving platter, then scattered about a cup and a half of washed baby spinach leaves over them. Next, I crumbled the goat's cheese on top of the salad, followed by the (cooled) maple coconut pecans. Just a sprinkle of extra virgin olive oil and a little sea salt and cracked pepper finished it off nicely.
My recipe for roasted maple coconut pecans...
ROASTED MAPLE COCONUT PECANS
2/3 cup pecan nuts
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1 scant tablespoon coconut palm sugar
Preheat oven to 180 degrees C. Combine the butter and maple syrup in a small saucepan and heat until the butter has melted. Stir to combine. Toss in the pecans and fold them through, ensuring that all are coated with the melted butter and maple syrup mixture.
Line a cookie tray with baking paper. Using a slotted spoon, remove the pecans from the melted butter mixture (taking care to drain off any excess liquid) and arrange them on the tray, allowing space in between. Sprinkle with the coconut palm sugar on both sides of the nuts. Now, pop the tray into the oven. Roast for 10-20 minutes, keeping a watchful eye on the pecans so that they don't burn. You can turn them over during the cooking time. Allow to cool and store in an airtight container until ready to use. Great as a snack or as a topping for green beans or salads.
Tell me dear readers, do you believe in keeping your beloved happy when it comes to food? And have you ever tried roasted maple pecans?
Hello. I'm Liz, a writer, cook and traveller based in Canberra, Australia.
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NB: I use Australian standard measuring cups and spoons in my recipes.