Wednesday, January 27, 2010

The Products of Pecan Place

2 trees produced a 129 pounds of pecans-and that's just the ones that fell into our yard.  The neighbor behind us also collected an abundance on their side of the fence.  There are 3 other trees that still need to be picked if I can work up the energy to go out in the cold and kink up my back picking them.


A few bags looking all tasty and posing with Donnie's vintage scale

I took the ones I picked to a place that shells them and left with what turned into 28 pounds of clean pecans.  I roasted them in the oven to dry them out so they wouldn't mold and dang they're good!  Since it wasn't biting cold this afternoon, I took them outside with a hair dryer to blow out the little skin part that comes loose when you roast them.  That little skin part is kind of bitter-kind of similar to the skin on a peanut.  I'm going to hate to see the electric bill from running the oven for hours and hours.  Cleaning all the skins, bad pieces, and shell fragments is a tedious and time consuming affair.  Now I know why pecans aren't cheap!

The process is kind of like this:
  1. Pick them up out of the yard-this is hell on the lower back
  2. Take them to the sheller-at $.40 a pound in the shell-or spend the rest of your life cracking them by hand.
  3. Clean the non-edible stuff out of them-this means examining every single one-putting aside the ones that didn't get extracted from the shell and the riff-raff at the bottom of the bag for examination later.
  4. Roast them in the oven at 225 until they look kind of shiny and kind of medium brown
  5. Remove them from the oven and let them cool
  6. Put them in a large trash bag-this allows static to pull off some of the skins
  7. Shake, fold, stir, whatever until nice clean pecans are at the top
  8. In the meantime, address that bag of riff-raff cause there are several pounds in there-way to many to waste.
  9. Get a scale and start weighing out 1 pound freezer bags of roasted pecans until you get to the area that starts having skins
  10. Get a table, a hair dryer, and an extension cord and take them outside.
  11. One cooking sheet at a time, take them outside and use the hair dryer to blow out the skins.
  12. Bring them in and weight them out and bag the clean ones.
  13. Repeat this process until they're all done and pray that you have room in the freezer until you decide exactly what you're going to do with all of them since a person can't use all those for a household of 2, by this time they're become pretty costly with the expense of cracking and electricity, they were way too much trouble to just give them away-cause my back still hurts, but they're frozen and safe and sound and ready to become something really tasty!
 I'll let you know what I come up with. :)

2 comments:

  1. Pecans are the "nut" on the prairie and we used to buy bags and bags of pecans and would spend November evenings shelling them and bagging them up for the freezer. It's a bit more costlier but we now buy them shelled at Costco.

    I can't imagine not having a bag of pecans in the freezer.

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  2. I can't imagine having to have a separate freezer for the bags of pecans! :)

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