Ma-Maw’s Pecan Macaroons

December 19th, 2011  |  Cookies, Favorites, Sweets  |  2 Comments

First thing I want you to do--go to your pantry/freezer and pull out the pecans you have on hand.  Take a look at them, then take a close look at these pecans.  Do they compare?   Pecans should be a light golden color and should appear full not shriveled up.  When fresh and lightly toasted, there is no other nut that can compare!  Pecans on the left are Cuero pecans,  Trader Joe's on the right.

You see, I've had a love affair with pecans dating back as far as I can remember.  Its always baffled me why folks would use walnuts over pecans in their baking.  Sharp, bitter, briny walnuts.  I think I know now that its because I have been spoiled with perfect south Texas pecans for my whole life.  My very small hometown has its own Pecan House... a place where you, too can buy these sweet and wonderful crunchy treasures and I highly recommend you do!  I promise you won't be sorry and you'll start to give those sad, pathetic grocery store pecans the evil eye as you pass them by as you think about the years you wasted on them.

Now on to these FAVORITE cookies in the whole wide world.  They are to me, our family's culinary definition of Christmas and we ONLY make them during the holidays--they are that sacred to us.   That all changed Christmas four years ago when my housekeeper/nanny/second mother discovered them and now I make them for her birthday in July as well (which is why I'm sharing the recipe with you now and not in December).   These are my great-grandmother's pecan macaroons.  The cookies we all look for when we walk in the door at my grandmother's house for the holidays and then spend the next three days passing around the 2 giant tins full until every last crumb is gone from both of them.   They are so incredibly delicious...light, airy, crunchy, chewy pecan toasty goodness... nothing like a coconut macaroon and nothing like those little French lovelies, macarons.  These cookies are in a league of their own.  The only problem with them is how highly addictive they are.  So here's how to make them.....


4 cups pecans halves, lightly toasted
6 slices toasted white bread (be sure there is no moisture left in the bread-it should be completely dried out)
6 large egg whites
2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla


Preheat oven to 275 on Convection Bake setting, or 300 degrees on Bake setting if your oven does not have the convection feature.  In a food processor, grind pecans and toasted bread and set aside.  In a separate bowl, beat egg whites until stiff and add sugar gradually an dthen vanilla.  Blend in pecan/bread mixture and drop by teaspoon on a slightly greased cookie sheet, or parchment paper.  Bake in slow oven at until lightly browned, about 15-20 minutes.

2 thoughts on “Ma-Maw’s Pecan Macaroons

  1. These cookies look amazing. I’m going to add these to my baking roster this holiday. Thanks for sharing a family recipe.

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