I spent the weekend visiting some friends in Saburtalo, and took advantage of their fully-equipped kitchen to do a little baking.  My parents sent me a care package somewhat recently, and it contained some pecans grown in our town.  Clearly they needed to be turned into something sweet and tasty.  My friend suggested these Pecan Puffs as a family favorite of theirs.  As an added bonus, the recipe doesn’t contain too many hard-to-find ingredients (we both brought vanilla extract with us, and everything else is easily available in Georgia).  Of course the pecans aren’t something you can buy here, but you could use walnuts (easily available in Georgia), though I think that wouldn’t be quite as special.

Homemade pecan puffs and fruit made an excellent dessert.

Pecan Puffs from “The Joy of Cooking” 

 1/2 cup (1 block plus 25 grams) butter
2 TBS sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup pecan meats (chopped)
1 cup cake flour (the recipe says to sift, but I’m a rebel and never bother)
Confectioners’ sugar

Preheat oven to 300* F (about 150, if you have an oven in Celsius), beat the butter until soft.  Add the sugar, and blend until creamy, then add the vanilla extract

Stir the pecans and the flour into the batter mixture. 

Roll the dough into small balls.

Place balls on a greased cookie sheet and bake about 30 minutes. 

Roll while hot in confectioners’ sugar.

Pecan puffs dredged in confectioners’ sugar.

We made a double batch, and wished we had gone all out and made a quadruple batch–they were really delicious, and the recipe doesn’t make all that many cookies.  I brought some with me on my excursion to Kazbegi in order to buy the friendship of my fellow travellers. I think it worked.