Orleans’ Pralines

When I used to consume tons of sugar, I was in New Orleans and found a candy treat which was just awesome.  They are called Pralines and basically they are pure sugar – and pure goodness!  You can make them yourself at home.  They are fairly easy to make but once cooked you need to work very quickly.  Here is what you need to make these treats:

Candy Thermometer

Whisk

Parchment paper

Tablespoon

1/2 cup butter

2 cups of white sugar

3/4 cup brown sugar

2 cups of chopped pecans

1t Vanilla

1/8t baking soda

Preparation

Since timing is everything in the recipe, prepare everything up front.   Lay out the parchment paper onto as many pans as needed to support about 20-30 pralines.   Think of them like cookies on a cookie sheet.  Do not use wax paper, only parchment.  Have the tablespoon ready as that is what you will use to make each serving.  Have the whisk and candy thermometer ready before you begin.

Heat the oven to 350 degrees standard or 325 degrees convection.    Place the pecan pieces on a baking tin and bake for 18 minutes.

Method

In a medium sized saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter and then add the white and brown sugar, pecans and the baking soda.   Mix thoroughly.  Once mixed, do not stir the mixture.   Insert the candy thermometer and cook until the mixture reaches the soft ball stage.   Once there, immediately remove from heat and add the vanilla.   Begin wisking the mixture vigourously for about 1 minute.   You will notice that it starts to thicken and a sheen appears.

Remove and start to spoon out the pralines onto the parchment paper.  Work quickly as you have only about 3 minutes to get them all distributed before the mixture starts to thicken too much to be spooned out.  If this happens, you can return the mixture to heat briefly but the results will not be the same.

Enjoy, these will be gone in no time!

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