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Pralines

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Lanna Apisukh for TODAY
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(52)

Ingredients

  • 1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup light cream
  • 2 tablespoons salted butter
  • 1 cup pecan halves

Chef notes

One of the most fascinating things about the history of the confection is that they are the work of women confectioners and, in many notable cases, the candies were used to generate income and, in times of enslavement, may have enabled many of the women to purchase their freedom and that of their relatives. So, the next time you’re in New Orleans and heading to a plane, take a minute or two, stop at one of the kiosks and pick up a box or two of the confection that carries an awful lot of history in one small patty.

Preparation

1.

Grease a slab of confectioner's marble or aluminum foil-lined sheet pans with nonstick cooking spray.

2.

In a heavy saucepan, bring both types of sugar, the cream and butter to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring constantly.

3.

When the temperature reaches 228 F on a candy thermometer, add the pecans and stir to combine. Continue cooking, stirring constantly, until the temperature is just shy of 236 F.

4.

Remove from the heat and gently stir the mixture until it thickens slightly, for 3 to 5 minutes. The mixture should be glossy.

5.

Using a soup spoon, drop heaping scoops (about 2 tablespoons) of the pralines onto the prepared marble; cool completely.