A few times a year, usually around July 1st and NHL playoff season, I return to my canadian roots. I find myself craving flavors I grew up with up, ranging from savory poutine to sweet maple. If you’ve never had a poutine, make it a priority to find the nearest restaurant that serves the Quebec delicacy.
Curd cheese and poutine gravy are hard to come by in Virginia so this week, I decided to explore my maple cravings by jazzing up blondies. To produce a really intense maple flavor, I added both real maple syrup and maple flavoring. The result was exactly what I needed to get me through round two of the hockey playoffs.
In addition to their maple element, these blondies contain pecans. My initial instinct is usually to throw chocolate into my batter so cooking with nuts is a relatively new practice for me. I’ve realized how playful and delicious an alternative pecans, walnuts and almonds can be so I’m making more of an effort to incorporate nuts into my baking.
I called them nuts, but pecans are in fact drupes, or fruits with a single pit. Packed with health benefits, pecans are full of oleic acid, a monounsaturated fatty acid proven to reduce the risk of breast cancer, and magnesium, which can help lower blood pressure. Not bad for a tiny tree ‘nut’.
- ½ Cup of butter (113.4 grams), melted and cooled
- ¾ Cup of brown sugar (120 grams)
- 1 Large egg
- ¼ Cup of maple syrup
- 1 Teaspoon maple flavoring
- 1 Cup flour (135 grams)
- ½ Teaspoon baking powder
- ½ Teaspoon salt
- ½ Cup pecans
- Preheat the oven to 350F
- In a large bowl, mix butter, brown sugar, egg, maple syrup and maple flavoring until it starts to thicken
- In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder and salt
- Pour dry ingredients into wet and mix until just combined being careful not to overmix
- Add pecans
- Pour batter into 9 x 9 baking pan
- Bake for 20-25 min or until a toothpick inserted into middle of blondie pan comes out clean