Snack it up with pecans

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Screen-Shot-2014-04-15-at-6.56.36-pm1Did you know that in America, National Pecan Day falls on April 14? We might not celebrate it in Singapore, but you can definitely include this healthy ingredient in your usual unhealthy snacks because, well pecans are awesome. Here are some easy pecan recipes you can try out during the upcoming long weekend:

1. BUTTER BRICKLE AND PECAN COOKIES

(Credits to Recipe Girl)

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INGREDIENTS

  • 2 cups (4 sticks) unsalted butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 bag Heath English toffee bits
  • 2 cups chopped pecans

DIRECTIONS

  1.  Melt butter in microwave, then stir in vanilla and cool completely.
  2.  In a large bowl, whisk together flour and sugar. Stir in butter mixture; add toffee bits and chopped pecans. Shape into your preferred-size balls, place them 5cm apart on an ungreased baking sheets and flatten the balls by using a metal spoon.
  3. Bake at 375° for 12 minutes, or until edges begin to brown.

 

2. CARAMEL BUTTER PECAN BARS

(Credits to Confession of a Cookbook Queen)

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INGREDIENTS

  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 sticks (12 Tablespoons) cold butter, sliced into pieces
  • 1 cup finely chopped pecans
  • 12 oz jar caramel ice cream topping, warmed until pourable
  • 11.5 oz bag milk chocolate chips

DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. In a large bowl, combine flour and brown sugar. Cut in butter until you have a blended, crumbly mixture.
  3. Evenly sprinkle mixture over an ungreased 9×13 pan. Press firmly to make a crust.
  4. Sprinkle pecans evenly over the crust and drizzle with the caramel topping.
  5. Bake for about 15-20 minutes, until the caramel is bubbling all over.  Remove from oven and immediately sprinkle with entire bag of chocolate chips.
  6. Leave it for 5 minutes, and then carefully spread the melted chips over the surface of the bars. Cut into squares when chocolate has cooled.

 

3. CHOCOLATE CHIP PECAN RAW ICE CREAM

(Credits to Shape)

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INGREDIENTS

  • 4 cups filtered water
  • 2 cups organic pecans
  • 3/4 cup pitted dates, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon organic raw agave nectar (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup organic dairy free dark chocolate chips

DIRECTIONS

  1. Place all the ingredients (except chocolate chips) into a blender and blend on high speed for about 2 minutes.
  2. Pour mixture into a container, add the chocolate chips and stir with spoon. Put it in the fridge for 30 minutes, then place in the freezer for about 2 hours.

 

4. BANANA PECAN SMOOTHIES

(Credits to myrecipes)

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INGREDIENTS

  • 1 1/2 cups low-fat vanilla yogurt
  • 2 large ripe bananas, sliced and frozen
  • 1 cup ice
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped toasted pecans
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

DIRECTIONS

  1. Process yogurt, bananas, ice, pecans, milk, honey, and cinnamon in a blender until smooth.
  2. Pour into glasses, and serve immediately.

 

5. CINNAMON-SUGAR CANDIED PECANS

(Credits to Browneyedbaker)

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INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 egg whites
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 pound pecan halves

DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 250 degrees. Line a large baking pan with parchment paper and set it aside.
  2. In a large zip-lock bag, combine the sugar, cinnamon and salt; set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, whisk together the egg whites, water and vanilla extract. Add the pecans to the bowl and stir them into the egg white mixture with a rubber spatula, making sure they are all moistened.
  4. Using a slotted spoon, remove the pecans from the egg white mixture and put them into the bag with the cinnamon-sugar mixture. Once all of the pecans are added, seal the bag, and shake it to coat all of the pecans.
  5.  Using a clean slotted spoon, remove the pecans from the bag and place onto the prepared baking sheet in a single layer. Bake for 1 hour, stirring them every 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool to room temperature.

 

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