Sticky pecan caramel shortbread

Pecans for me epitomise autumn, but I’m not sure why. Apparently they are indeed harvested in the autumn months, so it must be a tradition thing, as unlike fresh local produce you can still get them all year round. It’s funny as it’s not like any other nuts evoke such seasonal feelings, but I won’t dwell on that for too much longer.

Even more autumnal is pecans + maple syrup. That sweetness just brings a whole new level to the mix, as proven by the popularity of all things pecan pie. I’ve been craving something a little bit sticky, a little bit sweet, a little bit salty and a little bit crunchy, and this has totally hit the spot.

I was actually going to make a pecan pie before I came up with this, but my pie tin went missing and I had to rethink. I dreamt up a crunchy shortbread base, covered with a sticky caramel full of perfectly toasted pecans. It’s nothing short of mind blowing – I keep having to give some away when I make it or I’ll happily chomp through the entire thing!

Ingredients

For the base

  • 1 cup ground almonds
  • 1 cup oats
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil, softened
  • 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
  • Pinch of Himalayan salt
  • For the filling
    • 3/4 cup medjool dates
    • 1 1/2 cups pecans
    • 1/2 cup coconut milk
    • 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
    • 1/4 cup coconut oil
    • Pinch of Himalayan salt

    Bake base at 180C for 10 minutes.

    For the filling, blend the dates and coconut milk in a food processor until smooth. Place this and all the other ingredients except the pecans in a saucepan on a medium heat and stir for about ten minutes until it starts to thicken up. Roughly chop 1 cup of the pecans and stir them into the mixture, then remove from the hob and pour over the base. Spread it out evenly with a spoon and then place the remaining pecans on top. Bake again at 180C for 20 minutes, until the pecans begin to brown, then place in the freezer for 4 hours to cool before cutting into slices. Store in the fridge or freezer.

    Love, Mrs H xx

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