Making Pralines

I’m gonna see if I can share this. I concocted the recipe after we moved from Texas. In Atlanta we could find pralines, but they were chewy which is merely ok. A great praline is firm and will melt in your mouth. Up here, people don’t seem to have a clue what I’m talking about. So I thought if I ever wanted a decent one again, I had to make them myself.

For years, people have been asking for my recipe. It’s not that I don’t want to give it out. It’s that there is one part that I’m not sure how to explain in writing, but I’ll give it a go today.

The ingredients are easy enough

  • 1 cup of salted butter (butter! not margarine)
  • 1/2 cup of whole milk or cream (Don’t you dare go trying this with skim milk!)
  • 2 cups of brown sugar (light or dark will do. each tastes a little different)
  • about 1 1/2 cups of pecan halves. I’ve used two cups, but that’s really too many for dishing them out at the end.

You’ll also need

  • wax paper
  • a long handled wooden spoon
  • a heavy bottomed sauce pan. I like the NOT non-stick kind so I can use a mixer after I finish the cooking.
  • a mixer if you don’t want to be stirring from here to kingdom come

I get everything ready ahead of time. Lay out the waxed paper, get all the ingredients measured. Put any other spoons I think I might need out. I also put a potholder out just in case I need to set the pan down. This stuff is hot and it can set up really fast if it decides too.

I set the stove to medium high.

Put all the ingredients in the pan and let them melt.

Once everything melts, it will start to boil pretty fast.

Stir constantly at a rolling boil for 3 minutes.

Remove from heat after the three minutes.

Here is where I use the mixer on low to stir until it gets thick. This is the trickiest part and the one that I am least sure how to explain. The mix thickens and gets lighter you beat it. I use the mixer for about 5 minutes. It’s tricky because it has to still be a little runny, but much thicker than it was so that it will set up when you put them on the waxed paper.

Put in the pecans and stir them in.

Then drop them on the waxed paper. Sometimes you’ll get one with no pecans. Some have too many. Every one is different. No one will care. They will all be gone pronto.

Doesn’t take too long for them to be cool enough to eat. Could be as short as 5 minutes. Could be a couple of hours. If you didn’t stir the candy long enough after the three minutes, it just takes longer to set up. Once I had it take all night, but the next day, they were great.

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4 thoughts on “Making Pralines

  1. Brian says “Yum!” too. 😀 Maybe only transplanted Texans would understand what you’re talking about. Chewy pralines aren’t pralines, really, just chewy toffee with pecans in them.

    Looking forward to next weekend!

  2. i would add that you need to have the real deal on the brown sugar. I tried a batch last night, and had to supplement the brown sugar with the Splenda Brown Sugar Blend….this works well in baking, but not in candy-making. I have great tasting pecan-laden goo on my counters. 🙂

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