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One of my favorite things to do this time of year is gather pecans. We have two pecan trees across from our house that have been faithful to produce abundantly year after year.

Pecans are my favorite nut. I use them in all kinds of recipes, roast them for my oatmeal and salads, and eat them raw.  At almost $9 a pound for shelled ones, I’m thankful I’ve not had to buy them the last 13 years.

Many nut gatherers will take their bounty of pecans to the local co-op to have the nuts cracked and take them home to shell.  But Daddy taught me how to crack them to get the whole halves like you buy at the store so I do it myself. The secret is how you crack the pecan. I line the widest top part of the pecan up with the handles of my basic silver nutcracker and CRACK. When shelling the pecans I use the pick to dislodge the meat from the shell and clear out any of the bitters. That’s what we’ve always called the dark brown debris inside of the pecan shell.  If you eat a pecan with the bitters still lodged in the nut, you will know why.

A bag of shelled pecans is a much-loved Christmas gift around these parts. In fact, I’m working on shelling the two bags I will give away tomorrow.

Now my youngest daughter loves to gather, shell, and eat pecans as much as I do. And because of her grandpa’s secret, she cracks and shells them perfectly.

 

In response to the Daily Post’s Weekly Photo Challenge Gathering.