The Complete Package, my beloved husband, never makes candy. Ever. Until this December, that is, when he discovered his hidden talent for making Bourbon Pecan Pralines. If you’re going to be a candy savant, this is the recipe to perfect. It’s buttery and caramely and decadent. Oh, and did I mention it has bourbon in it? Lucky for me, he’s made them several times now. Lucky for you, he’s not stingy about sharing recipes.
TCP’s Bourbon Pecan Pralines
4 tablespoons butter
1 cup sugar
1 cup light brown sugar, packed
1 dash salt
1/2 cup heavy cream
2 cups pecan halves, toasted
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 tablespoon bourbon (we’re a Weller Special Reserve family)
butter for baking sheet (or a silpat mat)
Before you begin, prep your baking sheet so it will be ready when the candy is. Either butter the cookie sheet or line it with a silpat mat, if you have one handy.
In a heavy saucepan over low heat, melt the butter then stir in the sugar and brown sugar, salt and heavy cream. Cover and bring to a boil over medium heat. Once it comes to a boil, remove the lid and continue to boil until a candy thermometer reads 242F, or almost to firm ball stage.
Stir in the toasted pecans; remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla extract and bourbon. With a sturdy wooden spoon, continue to beat the candy until it goes from glossy to creamy and begins to thicken.
Working quickly, drop tablespoons of the candy mixture onto the prepared baking sheet. Allow them to cool completely. Once cooled, you can store them in an airtight container or wrap them individually in plastic wrap.
Note: If you’re like TCP, you’ll drop about 1/2 of a cup at a time and make these babies the size of the palm of your hand. Which is great if you love pralines; not so great if you’re prone to sugar-induced napping. Unless, of course, you’re on vacation for the holidays or you like naps, then it’s a total win/win.
Wishing you a Happy Holidays with plenty of pralines,
NanaBread & The Complete Package