Several months ago I got a small amount of Hacienda Alsacia when it was released in Japan. The paperwork that came with it suggested pairing it with pecan pies. So I set up a spread of different foods; lemon shortbreads, salted caramel ropes, milk chocolate and pecan pies. We tasted the coffee and all of the food, and I was really in love with how the sweet brown sugar paired with the Hacienda Alsacia. Fast forward to this week. I received a coffee care package from Seattle, and inside were two bags of Hacienda Alsacia! I was so excited for the opportunity to share this coffee with more of my partners, but also to explore with pairing this coffee with pecan pie.
Making a pecan pie is pretty easy, but it’s not exactly portable, or sharable. I already used store bought pecan tarts for a tasting, but I wanted to do something different.Recently I made cronuts for a coffee tasting (croissant donuts) and it got me thinking of other culinary mashups. If I could create something that on the outside looked like a muffin, but the inside was gooey like a pecan pie.. would that be called a puffin? Absolutely.
While I was day dreaming about reinventing pecan pie, I decided to make a cup of tea. I randomly grabbed a bag of Teavana Caramel Almond Amaretti tea, and was blown away by the aroma. Buttery with noted of toasted nuts and sweet caramel, I knew I had to use this tea to make these puffins!!! (Be aware that you will need to remove the large cinnamon bark pieces from the tea before baking. Save them for a cup of tea while you are baking!)
- ⅔ cup unsalted butter, softened
- 2 eggs
- ½ cup all purpose flour
- 1 cup light brown sugar, packed
- ¼ cup Teavana caramel almond amaretti tea (remove the cinnamon bark bits)
- 1¾ cup pecans, chopped
- Preheat oven to 350. Prepare muffin tins (I used mini muffin tins) with a generous amount of nonstick spray or butter.
- Using a stand mixer beat eggs and butter together until well combined. Then add the dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Fill muffin tins with batter, about ¾ full. Top with a pecan half.
- For the mini muffin tins, bake for 12-13 minutes. Full size for 16-18 minutes.
- Let cool for 5 minutes in the pan, and store in an air tight container if not eating right away.
This coffee is currently only sold in Japan and in Costa Rica.