03 November 2013

It's time for this month's Secret Recipe Club! The Secret Recipe Club is a group of food bloggers who secretly make one of someone else's dishes and post them all on the same day at the same time.  It's really fun, choosing a recipe to make, making the recipe, then reading about everyone else's recipes.  It's a great way to "meet" other bloggers and check out some great blogs that you never knew about before.

Secret Recipe Club

This month I was assigned the blog Cheap Ethnic Eatz.  It's written by Evelyne, a foodie from Montreal.  Evelyne describes her blog as "A journey into the many ethnic cuisines my city and the world has to offer."  She started it as a supper club and it grew into a blog, first more about her experiences dining out, but now morphing more into being more about her experiences in the kitchen.  Recipes of hers that made my short list were: Navajo Tacos, Pumpkin Pudding, and her East Meets West Arancini.  But I ended up going with one of her blended coffee drinks.  As soon as I saw her Maple Walnut Coffee, I knew that's what I wanted to make.

My family doesn't like walnuts that much, so I always substitute pecans instead.  So it turned into a Maple Pecan coffee smoothie.  Those of you who are paying attention might notice that this is now the third "maple pecan" recipe I have posted in a row.  (See Maple Pecan Salmon and Maple Pecan Scotch Eggs.)  I assure you that this was not intentional, and yes, I may be slightly obsessed with the combination of maple and pecan!

Maple Pecan Frappuccino

¼ cup chopped pecans
¼ cup oats (old-fashioned or quick-cooking)
1½ cups vanilla soymilk 
1 packet Via instant coffee
2 tbsp real maple syrup
Couple handfuls of ice cubes

Put the pecans and oats into a blender and pulse until they form a powder.  Add all remaining ingredients except the ice into the blender and process until smooth.  Add the ice and pulse until pulverized.  Transfer to two serving glasses; serve immediately.

Makes 2 (10 oz.) smoothies.

I'm calling these frappuccinos because that's what they reminded me of.  Only you won't find a maple pecan flavor at Starbucks!  They are cool and creamy with the perfect amount of coffee flavor, which is greatly enhanced by the maple and pecan.  I never would have thought to combine coffee, pecans, oats, and maple in a smoothie, but it totally works!

I used real maple syrup instead of maple extract because that's what I had on hand.  It added the perfect amount of sweetness.  I used vanilla Silk because that's what my kids drink (and I'm lactose-intolerant so it worked for me too), but you can use regular milk if you like.  You might need to adjust the sweetness since the vanilla soy is sweetened.

I didn't intend to drink too much of this smoothie because all I had on hand was regular Via.  (The store was out of decaf, which I usually get.)  I am very sensitive to caffeine, and already had some that day, so I was just going to take a few sips to try it out before giving the rest to my husband.  I guess I didn't realize how much I liked it until I looked down at my cup and realized it was almost empty.  Oops!  

Thanks for a great recipe, Evelyne!

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