Pecan Sandies

Everyone has a favorite cookie. For TTENG, it’s the chocolate chip–a solid classic (and when they’re warm and soft…it’s like heaven in your mouth). Runner up would probably be the peanut butter cookie or snickerdoodle. But for the MOTHER of TTENG, it’s the pecan sandie. Hands down. That’s her favorite cookie.

Faithful readers will recall that my mother never turns on an oven; hell, it was only last night that she actually learned HOW to turn on her oven!!![in preparation for baking with me today]. She also thinks half of the stuff I do baking-wise is just dark magic; when I made the blackberry coffee cake and told her the “steps” were batter, filling, batter, crumble, she thought that sounded WAY too complicated.

But “we” decided to try to make some pecan sandies. The day before (roughly around the time my mother was figuring out how to turn her oven on) I was out and about with my father. I called her and asked if there were ingredients I should pick up on my way home. She reads the ingredient list for the recipe. I notice one thing she did NOT call out was “powdered sugar”–and every pecan sandie in the world is doused in powdered sugar. I asked about that. She said, “Oh. It’s mentioned in the directions, not in the ingredients.”

And at this point I realize we’re really going to have some fun. This has to be my grandmother’s recipe. Like me, that woman did not exactly “do” measurements. Apparently she also thought powdered sugar was a given when making something like pecan sandies–to the point where it wasn’t included in the list of ingredients. This multi-generational baking experiment was going to be one for the books.

Sadly (?) the whole thing was pretty quick and dirty. Remarkably uneventful. And now–at the ripe old age of….–my mother has made her first batch of cookies. She has also learned how to turn her oven on and off (the latter for some reason was harder for her than the former…).



  • Flour
  • Sugar
  • Two sticks of butter
  • Vanilla extract
  • Water
  • Pecans
  • Powdered sugar


  1. Take your room temperature two sticks of butter and cream them with 1/3-1/2 cup sugar.
  2. Add vanilla extract and water. Continue to mix.
  3. Sift approximately 2 cups of flour into this mix. Fold in chopped pecans.
  4. Let the dough sit in the fridge for a few hours. Then, form cookies–which you place on an un-greased baking sheet.
  5. Bake at 350*F until done (less than 20 minutes). To serve, douse them in powdered sugar.

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