One of my favorite things about fall in Texas is the pecans. And for the record, Paula Deen, with all due respect, you are wrong. It is pronounced "Puh-cahn," not "Pee-can." My evidence for this is the fact that Pecans were first discovered in Texas by the Spanish, who then disseminated them around their lands. It is the State Tree of Texas and we say, "Puh-cahn."
But back to the beauty of autumn...our neighborhood was built amongst an existing pecan grove, and the trees in this area are tall and beautiful. They are also shedding their pecans like crazy right now. Court and I are more than happy to help ourselves to the freshly fallen capsules while on our walks. Don't worry, we are not taking them out of people's yards, as that would be rude. But I think that if they fall onto the sidewalk, they are fair game.
I remember going for walks through the Rosedale neighborhood with my grandparents in Austin and filling my pockets full of pecans that had fallen. I would then seat myself in front of the TV in the den and spend all afternoon cracking open the nuts while Grandpa watched Matlock and Colombo.
I am not an expert pecan cracker, so I rarely get whole pieces out, and it looks a bit squirrely to watch me digging in the shells for every last morsel, but they are so buttery and delicious, and so worth it. Just like every other home-grown food, pecans are just better than store-bought when you get them from right underneath the tree.
What are your fall favorites right now? Are they connected to childhood memories?