New tradition…or just nuts?!

With each passing year I like to try to find new ideas for Christmas gifts that I can create for family and friends. There are so many presents that are just as much fun to make as to receive.

Yummy treats are always good to get. I admit I don’t have the patience to do much baking anymore though. Oh yeah, the first sheet of perfectly shaped cookies are a blast. But then I find myself in a showdown with the never-ending bowl of dough and the cookies get freakishly bigger and bigger until the last batch consists of just two frisbee-sized cookies so I can get it all over with!

So this month I decided while my man was tending to his customary smoker full of chickens, I’d take a crack at spiced pecans.

Not literally, they were already shelled and the ease of roasting a whole batch at a time was appealing. As I pored over different recipes online, the boyfriend suggested I make at least 3 types and we settled on sweet (flavored with maple syrup), savory (thanks to rosemary), and spicy.

pecans
Sweet and spicy pecans

The spicy turned out to be my favorites, spices with a little heat like cayenne mix with the sweetness of brown sugar in an addictive way I don’t think should be saved for just the holidays but will be enjoyed all year. Plus, we’re already looking forward to trying different recipes for next Christmas.

Happy gift recipients and quality time with a handsome guy in the kitchen? It all adds up to a nice Holiday bonus for me!

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