In the beet salad recipe I posted a few days back, I referenced sugared pecans. I thought I should post some instructions for how to make them – it is really simple and really quick, which means its totally feasible to whip up a quick batch to go in the salad you’re making. They’ve also become standard fare when we are enjoying bread and cheese, they’re especially delicious to eat with some of the gorgonzolas and blues.
Quick Sugared Pecans (or walnuts, almonds, or nut of choice)
1. Gather supplies. This recipe goes really quickly, so you’ll want to have everything ready to go before you begin. You’ll also want to read the instructions all the way through before you begin. You don’t want the pecans to blacken or the sugar to brown while you’re looking for a plate (I speak from experience).
To gather: sugar (about 1/4-1/3 cup), pecans (about a half cup, or enough to fit on a single layer in your pan), a small pan, a wooden spoon, and a plate.
2. Put pecans in a single layer in the pan.
3. Turn heat onto medium-high and stir constantly until they are toasted. You should notice a toasty smell after a few minutes, when you do, turn off the heat and lift one nut out with the wooden spoon. It should be hot on both sides.
4. With stove off but pan still on the stove, cover the pecans with a generous shake of sugar. Stir quickly and watch as the sugar begins to melt. If the sugar isn’t melting, turn the stove onto low and stir until the sugar just begins to liquify and then turn the stove off immediately. You want to melt the sugar, NOT cook the sugar.
5. When the pecans are coated with melted sugar, sprinkle another spoonful of sugar over them, give them a quick stir so that the sugar crystals stick to the melted sugar that’s on the pecans, and turn the pan out onto a plate to cool
6. Let cool on the plate for 5-10 minutes, and they’re ready to eat!
Be sure to wipe out the pan while its still a little warm or else you’ll have to soak it to get the sugar residue out