I made that!

Bourbon Pecan Praline!

Posted in All Sugar All The Time, Southernness, The Candy Store by brandi on November 13, 2009

Yesterday a friend emailed asking me for a good southern praline recipe. I vaguely remembered someone making it at Tartine and found the recipe in their cookbook. I know, being from Bama I should consult some relative back home, or at least some dusty old stack of secret southern recipes. But the last recipe for candy my grandmother shared called for paraffin wax (like IN the brittle – YUCK!) and I have my limits. After typing up the recipe for her, it was all I could think about. I had all the ingredients already, so it seemed like a waste to NOT make some…

I started by toasting the pecans for a few minutes, to perk them up.


Then I mixed the sugar, cream, butter, salt, molasses and bourbon in a largish pot.


I let that boil, stirring occasionally, until it reached 240 degrees.


I let it sit in the pot cooling, still stirring occasionally, until it reached 210 degrees. I stirred in the toasted nuts, making sure to get them well coated.  Then I poured the mixture out on a sheet pan. I let it cool for 1 minute to start setting up, then sprinkled sea salt on top. Because I like my candy salty. You can omit that step if you prefer unadulterated sweetness.


After it cooled completely I broke the praline into chunks. And then started passing it out to anyone who walked by. Because this stuff is like crack. Pure candy crack. Definitely dangerous, definitely best to share it before I scarf it all down myself! And did I mention that it took like 20 minutes? So really, there are no excuses.



2 cups (10 oz) pecan halves

3 cups (21 oz) sugar

1 cup (8 oz) heavy cream

4 tbsp (2 oz) unsalted butter

1/4 tsp salt

1 tbsp unsulphered molasses

2 tbsp bourbon

sea salt (optional)

– Preheat oven to 325

– Spread pecans on baking sheet and toast for 4 minutes. Let cool completely.

– Line another baking sheet with parchment. Set aside.

– In a deep heavy bottom saucepan, combine sugar, cream, butter, salt, molasses and bourbon

– Cook over medium high heat, stirring to break up lumps.

– Bring to boil and cook, stirring occasionally, until it registers 240 on thermometer.

– Remove from heat and let cool until it reaches 210.

– Add the pecans and stir vigorously (you have to work fast because it will start to thicken).

– Pour mixture onto the sheet pan and let it cool for 1 minute.

– Sprinkle on sea salt.

– Let cool for an hour and then break into chunks.


5 Responses

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  1. john said, on November 13, 2009 at 7:43 pm

    This is how I’m going to finally end up with diabetes.

  2. Jennifer said, on November 30, 2009 at 11:50 am

    I believe I have all the ingredients at home, waiting for me, calling to me to make them into this. I love the idea of the salt and I’m sitting here now at work, feeling kind of wonderfully tortured (in the good, thinking great thoughts about food kind of way), dreaming about making these. I’m hoping these have Christmas-gift qualities, but I wonder if I can keep the original batch around long enough to see if they’ll hold up in the mail….
    Thank you from the bottom of my heart!

  3. Armil@pecan praline recipe said, on November 21, 2010 at 9:50 pm

    It’s just so delicious to taste this delicacies especially if being prepared well. No doubt it’s everybody’s favorite.

  4. Ellen said, on December 1, 2010 at 9:20 am

    Hi Brandi,

    Do you know how long this lasts, ideally at least? I’d like to get started on my holiday a little early and wonder if this keeps a couple of weeks.


    • brandi said, on December 1, 2010 at 11:28 am

      You know, they’ve never lasted very long in my house. I would guess though, that they would be good for 2 weeks. But with all candy, the humidity will greatly affect that.

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