Recipes so good it oughta' be a sin!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Mary Mac's Pecan Pie Muffins

It's been many years since I visited Mary Mac's Tea Room in Atlanta. It's one of those places that are legendary in the South. While lots of folks from "away" know places like the Lady and Son's Restaurant (Paula Deen) in Savannah, Mary Mac's is not quite as well known in other locales. Yet, it is a true Southern gem.

John Ferrell, the current owner, has published a cookbook that not only provides the wonderful recipes used in the restaurant for the past 65 years but also a charming and enlightening history of the restaurant from its opening in 1945 until the current day.

This is one of those books that is a "must have" if you're going to be doing Southern cuisine. The dishes span everything from appetizers (including a cornmeal dipped French Fry) to side dishes and entrees right down to the breads and desserts. Nestled among all these mouthwatering recipes was one for Pecan Pie Muffins. It looked scrumptious and very easy so I decided to make it my 3a.m. baking project.

The results are great and this will become a classic in my kitchen repertoire for gifts and baskets of baked goodies!

1 cup chopped pecans
1 tbs. butter, melted
1 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
8 tbs. butter, melted
2 large eggs, lightly beaten

Preheat oven to 300°. Mix 1 tbs. melted butter with chopped pecans and spread on baking sheet in even layer. Toast pecans for 3 to 4 minutes. Increase oven temperature to 350°.

In large bowl mix together brown sugar, flour, and chopped pecans. Stir thoroughly and then make a well in the center of the dry ingredients. Add the remaining 8 tbs. of melted butter and the eggs. Stir with wooden spoon until mixture is well mixed and all dry ingredients are wet.

Line a 6 cup muffin tin with paper liners and lightly spray with cooking spray. Fill each cup about 3/4 full with mixture. Place in 350° oven for 20 to 25 minutes or until tops of muffins are lightly browned. Remove immediately from pan and allow to cool on wire rack.

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