Spicy Maple Pecans

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I come from a family of pecan growers. I love those little tasty nuts! 🙂
So does my Granny. She gave me plenty of them at Christmas time when I was down in FL for a visit. I heard that she liked spiced or sweet pecans. So, for her birthday in February I said I would make her some. Well, now it is about 3 weeks after that and I am just getting around to making/sending them. But, these are so good – so please get them out of your house quickly!

I found this recipe on Hannah’s blog (I love her simple yet beautiful photography) and halved it:

1/2 lb pecan halves, unsalted
1 1/2 T unsalted butter, melted
2 T real maple syrup
1/2 T light brown sugar
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/3 tsp cayenne pepper

375. Pan with shallow sides, spray pam. Mix all together to evenly coat. Bake for about 12 minutes, stirring frequently. I only burnt 2 so that is good!

Super Bowl Food

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Wow, it seems like the Super Bowl was so long ago! And it was only Sunday (2 whole days). It is amazing how fleeting things in life are that are totally not important!
I went over to a friend’s house and we both made some stuff we liked, but also picked conferences and made food for that team.
I had the NFC (Saints) and made bourbon chicken (it was sweeter than I wanted it to be, but I have leftovers). Lorrie had the AFC (Colts) and she had oreos (commercials) and Orville Redenbacher – because it is in IN.
The nachos and oreos were fave part for me.

Taste of Chicago – Grand Lux Cafe

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We thought the bags looked pretty familiar when we walked in – we were right – this place is owned by the same folks who own Cheesecake Factory. You know its going to be good. And it was next door to Ann Taylor – so how bad could it bed? And it had a wait at 4pm? We only waited about 15 minutes and when we walked out – it was about an hour wait. Glad we got there early!
I was not anticipating a sit-down nice restaurant when I heard about this place from a friend just based on the name alone. I’m so glad we stopped there.
We had their bread – very good. I took lots of photos. I dropped my knife and fork – silly me. The tables were completely on top of each other, but people know how to dine. I couldn’t tell you what the other folks were talking about at their table. Most of the time people talk so loud at restaurants. Our first waiter wasn’t all that, but halfway through they changed shifts and our waitress was much better.
To start off with – the Edamame: stir fried with Spicy Szechwan Sauce. SO GOOD! Better than Chais in Durham (gasp!)
Then, Janel got the soup of the day – a chicken chowder with veggies. I took a bite – good and warm on a cold day.
I got the mini goat cheese and mushroom pizza. This was not mini (about 7 inches by 3 inches) and was only 4.95 and was AMAZING. I would go back there every time and order this.
For dessert (and take home): New Orleans Beignets Served Warm with Three Sauces (a creme anglaise (close your eyes and savor the warmth and richness good), chocolate, and raspberry. They were warm and yummy. Thanks Kathy for the suggestion.
This place was definitely the best place I ate all weekend and I would gladly go there again! 🙂