This is one of those posts that many, many people around the world look for, but not many food bloggers take the time to write. It’s for a part of a recipe, not for a recipe in its entirety. I actually love this kind of stuff because for years, I’ve been searching for answers such as these. You know, the stuff in between.
Today, I’m going to quickly discuss how to make caramelized pecans, or what some would refer to as “candied” pecans. The process is so simple and the result is, let’s just say, memorable. Adding candied nuts to salads and desserts is a win in pretty much everyone’s book.
There are a few different versions of candied pecans, but only one version of caramelized pecans. When you candy something, you may take certain liberties. For instance, many candied pecan recipes call for sugar, cinnamon, salt, egg whites and the like. These types of recipes can be tweaked to fit specific needs and tastes. When it comes to caramelized pecans, there’s a lot less liberty. The definition of “caramelization” is:
…the oxidation of sugar, a process used extensively in cooking for the resulting nutty flavor and brown color. Caramelization is a type of non-enzymatic browning reaction.
So really, all you need to is the nuts, some sugar and a process. In reality though, whether you candy something or caramelize something, you’re going to end up with an awesome tasting nut. You just need to be sure not to burn them.
1/2 Cup Pecans
1/4 Cup White Sugar
Warm a small skillet over medium heat. When it’s to temperature, add the sugar and the pecans to it. Stir gently until the sugar melts and the pecans are well coated and glistening. When this happens, immediately remove the pecans from the skillet and place them on a piece of waxed paper. Let everything cool.
After that, you can either add the pecans to a dish as is or you can fold the waxed paper over and hit the nuts with the back of a large spoon to break them up. Then, you can add the pieces to whatever dish it is you’d like.
Here’s what your skillet should look like after caramelization. See? No burning whatsoever.
That’s it! Next time, I’ll offer a nice easy recipe for preparing the “candied” pecans I referred to above. Thanks for reading!