Already behind and haven’t really started…

I think back to last year at this time and I was so ahead of the game. Tree was up, as well as all holiday decor. All the gifts were bought and wrapped. All the Christmas cards were done and addressed, stamped and ready to go.
This year I do have some holiday decor up but no tree yet. That was suppose to be done Friday night, then Saturday night, then tonight (yeah, not happening somehow we got the tree up, I think this post nudged me a little to do it). I have one gift bought. I think I have wrapping paper somewhere. Christmas cards? Not purchased. Have no idea where my address book is (it’s been missing for months). Stamps? Do I even have those?
To top it off I have 9 holiday parties I have been invited to. Five of which of course are on the same night. :( Boo. I hate to tell people no, I don’t want them to think we don’t want to come. But I have done the spreading yourself thin and go to all five party thing before and it is no fun. You don’t get to enjoy any of the parties because you are too busy starring at your watch to make sure you have enough time to get to the next one. So this year I have told myself, no more than two parties in a day.
Most of these are potlucks of some sort. Which means I am frantically trying to figure out what I want to make. I always over analyze what to make. I also tend to bring more than the average person. I need to work on that habit. Especially with all the food based parties we are going to this season.
One of my parties is a progressive dinner party. I’ll be going to that one as I am the co-host for the dessert portion of the meal (surprise…I’m doing dessert!). So I have been working on desserts to see what I want to serve for the party. I want to make one chocolate based dessert and “other”.
This falls into the other category. Orange says holiday to me. Not really sure why though it could have to do with those chocolate oranges that you have to crack open and it breaks into segments. We especially enjoyed opening them by smashing them on each other’s heads. Ah, siblings, if it were not for them who would torture us and vice versa? :P So when I saw this caramel pecan tart I decided it needed to be a orange caramel pecan tart. So glad I did, it went so nicely with it.

Orange-Caramel Pecan Tart

For the Tart Dough:

1 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature
¼ cup granulated sugar
1 egg yolk
½ tsp vanilla extract
1 ¼ cup all-purpose flour
¼ tsp table salt
zest of one medium orange

Coat a 9” tart pan with removable bottom with nonstick spray; line baking sheet with foil. (I used 4 3-inch diameter tart pans instead).
Cream together butter and sugar for the dough in a bowl with a mixer until light. Add egg yolk and vanilla, beat until combined, then add flour, salt, and zest.
Mix just until dough forms.
Press dough evenly into tart pan, trimming excess from the edges. Chill until firm, 30  minutes; preheat oven to 350F.
Place tart on prepared sheet and bake until crust is dry to the touch but hasn’t begun to brown, 12-14 minutes. Remove from oven (leave oven on) and cool slightly.

For the Filling:

1 ½ sticks unsalted butter, cubed
¾ cup brown sugar
1/3 cup light corn syrup
3 TBSP granulated sugar
3 TBSP heavy whipping cream
½ tsp table salt
1 ½ TBSP orange liqueur (I used Grand Marnier)
1 ½ cups pecan halves, toasted
Bring butter, brown sugar, corn syrup, granulated sugar, cream and salt for the filling to a boil in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Cook to 240F on an instant read thermometer. Off heat, stir in the orange liqueur (it will bubble furiously), then fold in the pecans.
Pour mixture into tart shell(s), return to oven, and bake until filling is bubbly and crust is brown, about 20 minutes (about 15 for the smaller ones). Let tart cool on the baking sheet 15-20 minutes, then carefully remove the side ring. Cool tart completely before slicing.

Adapted from Cuisine at Home Magazine Holiday Menus


  1. 9 parties! oh you social butterfly!

  2. Wow! That looks amazing and I’ve never thought to incorporate orange and pecans. Hope your holiday was wonderful and tasty!

  3. Oh my god, I know what you mean. There’s still so much to do…! I don’t have any parties planned, but I do have an extensive list of gifts to bake and make…

  4. At least, I don’t have this stress ;-P…

    Your tarts look wonderful! I love the addition of orange liqueur to the filling!



  5. Party animal! Luckily I just have 2 to attend this month, plus the fam.

    I love orangey desserts. Especially with either chocolate, or caramel. Or all 3 together is good too.

  6. Yikes… I don’t know how I would’ve handled that. If I’d said “but, I’m already going to 2 parties!” They might be even more offended that they weren’t one of the two, or you couldn’t make more time. Sigh. Well, I only have 2 groups of friends + family, so it’ll be a while before I have to think of such things :)
    It’ll sure be one lucky party that gets served these lovely tarts!

  7. 5 parties in one night! I would simply go to the one that promises to be the best fun and have the best food! lol! the tart looks great!

  8. Beautiful photos! I love the bubbled-over caramel ^__^. I may invite myself along to that particular party… XD.

  9. Oh my word, look at all the yumminess oozing out of that pecan pie!!! Addition of orange….brilliant!

  10. Yummy! The flavor combination must have been heavenly! Beautiful minis!
    Bummer about the parties though… next year, YOU should throw the party! LOL What a great excuse not to have to choose between the too numerous ones you’re invited to, no? LOL
    Didn’t you ever poke cloves in oranges for Christmas decorations and divine aromas around the tree (that’s why oranges spell Christmas for me anyways)? Hummm… I guess the banging of the chocolate oranges on your sibblings head was way more fun, huh? I wish I had thought of that one for my bros! LOL LOL

  11. Ahh, me too!! We have ONE of our Christmas trees up and decorated, but not the other one (or any of the stockings over the fireplace) – my family and I need to hop to it!!

    Love the orange/caramel flavor combination you used for the tart – so enticing!! Especially since I’m a caramel fanatic :-)

  12. Your tartlets look so yummy! And don’t feel bad, I’m a little behind this year too…I haven’t even thought of what to get people for Xmas yet :)

  13. oh these look to die for! i have been wanting to make pecan pies for ages and have never made it… this might just be the right recipe (i know i can always trust yours!!!) a bit late for thanksgiving, maybe, but who cares!!!

  14. Oh my goodness… 9 parties already. I bet these pecan tarts will be a hit…they look specially yummy!

  15. oooohhh I like the addition of orange

  16. Mmm…those look yummy. And I’m not a big pecan pie fan. I’m behind too. And I’ve decided I’m okay with it. I usually have my tree up by now but my back feels like it’s been stepped on by 3 overweight elephants so I think maybe this just isn’t the time. We’ll make there somehow!

  17. Orange says Holidays to me too! I keep trying to come up with new recipes and this one fits the bill.

  18. You are killing me. These photos are making my mouth water! I love the flavor combination in these little tarts. Have fun at all your parties.

  19. How I love pecan! I might see these with a coffee liqueur – would you be ok with that as orange just doesn’t usually do it for me. That’s odd I guess because I really associate orange with Christmas too. Getting an orange in a stocking was a good thing when I was growing up.
    Happy partying!

  20. NINE parties? Dang, girl. You are quite the social diva. As far as holiday decor goes, we never put up anything until 2 weeks before Christmas Day, so you’re ahead of me. And I don’t even need to tell you those pecan tarts are amazing, right? Orange AND caramel? Oh, my.

  21. Oh man, these look fabulous! My grandpa’s wife loves pecan pie…I’m sending her this recipe!

  22. Wow, you’re very popular! When I see delicious things like this Orange caramel pecan tart I feel like inviting you to my party too! :)

  23. Lovely tarts! I totally agree about oranges! I’m not surprised that you have so many party invites :) I’m sure you’ll get it all done!

  24. I’d love to attend a progressive dinner where you serve dessert!! You are on top of it more than I am – my Thanksgiving decor is still up. I guess I should work on that tomorrow.

  25. These look so good with the caramel! I’ve never tried an orange-caramel combination, but I bet it would be delicious. Have fun at all your Christmas parties!

  26. I know just what you mean about party overdose — my new rule is one party per weekend. I always pick the one that I think will have the best food!

  27. I can’t wait to make these.

    They sound fantastic!

    I’m sure they’ll be a hit…

    Thanks for the recipe.

  28. FIVE on the same night! Oh my!! Stay home and eat these babies instead! :-)

  29. hello, ooze, old friend–how i’ve missed you. and you’re not just any ooze–you’re caramel orange ooze. yum. :)

  30. I’d go to whichever party these tarts would be at! :)

    Oh boy…I know what you mean though…Im so behind!

  31. Oh, yeah, I hear you. Thanksgiving being late put me off my stride and now it’s already December and I’m soooo not ready. But I would still take the time to eat one of your amazing tarts.

  32. I love the flavor of orange with almost anything. Your little tarts look amazing- orange, caramel and pecan…love it.

  33. I’m trying to think how well a progressive dinner would work with small children and cold weather. Sounds like a lot of bundling to me. I might be up for the challenge, though.

  34. Your tarts look absolutely delicious and tasty…

    I love pecan nuts!!

  35. I actually don’t have much to do for xmas because we don’t really celebrate it (we just ski our asses off), and yet I am behind on what little I have planned! Those tarts are adorable. I’m amazed that you got 9 (or now 10?) party invites. None of our local friends cook let alone entertain… and I’m personally a leeeetle tired of being the only one who does. Pet the pup and bunny for me :)

  36. Glad to see I’m not the only one feeling behind already. We bought our Christmas cards for this year even before last years holiday…but we don’t have stamps yet, we haven’t printed out the addresses and our next free night to do so is over a week away. Considering we send out over 250 cards, this takes DAYS to do!

  37. At least you are well loved and in demand, right? ;) Those tarts sound great – orange sounds like the Holidays to me too though, but it is because I remember back in the day when we would stud little clementines with cloves and ribbon them and hang them on our tree. I am hoping to reinstate the tradition this year, but we’ll see.

    Have fun!!

  38. I’m crazy about orange and pecans together – these tarts look very moreish, Pea.
    I haven’t been able to get into holiday feeling just yet. I sometimes feel a bit blue at this time of the year. But ever since I started blogging you and the other blogging friends I have made have really brought a special meaning to it.

  39. Love the pecan tarts! They look delicious. If it makes you feel any better, here it is December 4th, I have no cards bought, no tree yet and all decorations are in storage. I’ve got lots to do this weekend! Love your photos! Have fun at your parties!

  40. quite the busy bee this holiday season, huh? i’m not a nut fan but if i were, i would gobble up that tart in no time :)

  41. 9 parties? Sheesh! Apparently I need a more active social life.

  42. Found you on a friend’s Facebook page!
    Yummy stuff… I am now following you on Pinterest too!
    Claudine (I am migrating my blog from

  43. Hello Friend,
    Maybe you have heard this before BUT reading your blog made me feel like I was reading
    my sister Shelly’s e-mail!! You two are kindred spirits. I will be using this recipe at my daughters baby shower! I have been looking for something small and this my dear WINS!!

  44. Yummy!!! This is perfect for the holidays. I been craving pecan pie lately. I love the size of tartlets:)))

  45. Hi,
    Just wanted to let you know I found this on Pinterest and actually made them as an extra dessert for Cdn thanksgiving.
    As I was putting the dough together, I thought, there is no way this is turning out, but I have to say, what a delicious orange tart bottom – to die for! I will for sure be making this dough again for multiple uses.
    The caramel filling was very hard once chilled, almost like taffe. They must be reheated before serving otherwise you will break your teeth. Delicious however, once softened.
    Your recipe is a keeper!!

  46. The caramel must have cooked too long sadly.

  47. I have literally had 2 slices of this pie, as haas my husband and wow. I did alter the orange flavouring as I’m not a fan of fruit flavoured anything. I had trouble with my base, could not roll it out, so in frustration created a patchwork base. To my utter surprise, it worked! Now in the uk we don’t have corn syrup however I used golden syrup. Apart from the it was surprisingly easy to make. It didn’t go too hard, but all the gooyness worked for us. I will definitely do this for Christmas! Thank you for posting this recipe.

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