LUCY BURDETTE: Salad during the winter months can be a little dreary, don't you think? I so miss the good tomatoes and peppers and cucumbers that come out of our garden in the summer. But this recipe for sweet and spicy pecans jazzes up any winter greens.
2 cups pecans
1 and 1/2 TBsp butter
2 Tbsp brown sugar
1 Tbsp white sugar
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper (or to taste)
several twists fresh black pepper
1/2 tsp Kosher salt
Melt the butter in a frying pan and saute the pecans for two minutes over low heat. Mix the sugars and the spices in a small bowl and then add them to the hot pecans. Stir the mixture over low heat for 8 to 10 minutes until the sugar melts and coats the nuts.
Spread the nuts on foil to cool. The nuts make a lovely addition to a winter salad. In this case, I used mixed greens, sliced apples, and pecans, topped with a balsamic vinaigrette.
But they are also delicious by themselves. My sister makes jars and jars of these to give away as Christmas presents. They are that good!
You can learn more about Lucy Burdette and her Key West food critic mysteries at her website or on Facebook or Twitter.