Friday, January 7, 2011

Panela Pralines Recipe


* 1.25 cups finely chopped or shredded panela (from about 1.5 cones) OR 1 cup packed dark brown sugar
* 1/2 tsp salt
* 1 cup water
* 2 tbsp butter
* 1 cup toasted pine nuts
* 1 tsp vanilla extract


1. Prepare a baking sheet by lining it with aluminum foil and set aside for now.

2. Place the shredded panela, the salt, and the water in a small saucepan, stirring until the sugar dissolves. Insert a candy thermometer and cook, without stirring, until the mixture reaches 236 degrees F (113 C) on the candy thermometer.

3. Remove the pan from the heat, take out the thermometer, and stir in the butter. Set the pan aside to cool without stirring for 8 minutes.

4. Add the pine nuts and vanilla extract, and begin to stir steadily. After a minute or two, you will notice that the pine nuts are completely coated with the candy, and that it is beginning to lose its shiny gloss and get thicker and slightly opaque. At this time, stop stirring and start dropping it by spoonfuls onto the prepared baking sheet.

5. If the candy seizes before you have finished portioning it all out, add a small spoonful of very hot water and stir--this should loosen the candy and allow you to scoop the rest of it. Once all the candy is scooped, let them stand until they have completely set.

6. Store Panela Pralines in an airtight container at room temperature for up to two weeks.

Source: Panela Pralines Recipe - How to Make Panela Pralines - Pralines Candy Recipe

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Old Time Popcorn Balls

2 cups granulated sugar
1 1/2 cups water
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1 teaspoon vinegar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
5 quarts popped corn

Butter sides of large saucepan. In it combine the sugar, water, salt, syrup and vinegar. Cook mixture over medium heat to the hard ball stage (250*F / 120*C) or when a small amount is dropped in cold water and forms a ball that holds its shape but is pliable.

Remove from heat and stir in vanilla. Slowly pour over popped corn, stirring just to mix well.

Butter hands slightly; shape into balls. Wrap each individually in decorative cellophane paper or plastic wrap and tie with a pretty ribbon, if desired.

Makes 15 to 20 popcorn balls.

Photo by: Brian Omura 


Wednesday, October 6, 2010

New Orleans Pralines

Photo by: djprybyl


* 1 cup granulated sugar
* 1 cup packed brown sugar
* 1/2 cup evaporated milk
* 4 tbsp butter, cubed
* 2 tsp vanilla extract
* 1.5 cups toasted pecans, coarsely chopped


1. Prepare a baking sheet by lining it with aluminum foil and spraying the foil with nonstick cooking spray.

2. In a medium saucepan combine the brown sugar, granulated sugar, and evaporated milk over medium heat. Stir until the sugar dissolves, then insert a candy thermometer.

3. Cook the candy, stirring occasionally, until the candy reaches 240 degrees on the thermometer.

4. Once the proper temperature is reached, remove the pan from the heat and drop the chunks of butter on top, but do not stir. Allow the pan to sit for one minute.

5. After a minute, add the vanilla extract and the pecans, and begin to stir smoothly and constantly with a wooden spoon. Soon the candy will begin to get thicker and lighter in color.

6. Continue to stir until the candy starts to hold its shape. It should still be easy to stir, however. It is important not to stir too much, as pralines quickly go from fluid to rock-solid. Once it is a lighter, opaque brown and holds its shape, quickly begin to drop small spoonfuls of the candy onto the prepared baking sheet.

7. Work quickly to form the candies, as the pralines will start to set in the saucepan. If the candy stiffens before you’re done scooping, add a spoonful of very hot water and stir until it loosens, then continue scooping until you have formed all the pralines.

8. Allow the candy to fully set at room temperature, for about 30 minutes. Store New Orleans Pralines in an airtight container at room temperature.

Source:  New Orleans Pralines Recipe