After a year and a half in the South, I’m willing to admit that there is one food advantage in Georgia: fresh pecans. My faith in this butter-laden, battered-and-fried region’s cuisine has been renewed by a nut.
We bought our first fresh pecans from the market just after Thanksgiving, and they blew our minds. I had so many plans to make candied pecans, caramel-nut topped shortbread bars, and pecan-crusted chicken…alas, they were too delicious for all that. We munched them down by the handful, and it’s really a miracle that the bags I purchased as gifts didn’t get eaten, too.
Compared with store-bought nuts, fresh pecans are lightly sweet, moist, and have more of that fragrant oil that makes them toast up so beautifully. Also, they’re full of healthy unsaturated fats, loaded with vitamins and antioxidants, and can lower your cholesterol.
In other words, bring on the pecans! They’re new year’s resolution-friendly.
Since we’re focusing on simple recipes to cook and eat at home this month, these pecans aren’t going into a fancy (and corn syrup-laden) pie or some fussy yeasted rolls. The recipe won’t use nine bowls, send you all over town for obscure ingredients, or make you cry. We’re just making muffins today. If an easy winner for breakfast piques your interest, though, these gluten free banana nut muffins are for you.
- 230g (1 c.) mashed bananas (2 large)
- 120 g (1/2 c.) brown sugar
- 1 egg (55g)
- 70g (1/3 c.) oil
- 95g (1/2 c.) brown rice flour
- 65g (1/2 c.) tapioca starch
- 90g (1/2 c.) sorghum flour
- 1 tsp. xantham gum
- 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
- 1/2 tsp. baking soda
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 60g (1/2 c.) pecans, toasted and chopped, plus a few extras for garnish
- Preheat oven to 350F and line a muffin tin with 12 paper cups. Set aside.
- Mix bananas, sugar, egg, and oil together with your trusty wooden spoon. Stir in dry ingredients and mix to combine. Fold in pecans.
- Spoon batter into muffin cups, filling not quite to the top. Sprinkle a few extra pecan pieces on top, and bake 20-25 minutes, until muffins test done. Remove to a wire rack to cool.