Except for those with nut allergies (apologies to one of our nieces) or those who avoid cinnamon (apologies to one of our nephews), just about everybody loves pecans with a sugar-spice crunch. The coating elevates the nuts to a luxurious treat—in just a few minutes and with the simplest ingredients.
We like to give these away at Christmas, but they also make a perfect sweet for Passover. What’s more, they qualify as vegan and gluten-free without even trying.
This recipephany came from The Boston Globe’s Confidential Chat (or informally, “Chatters”). An early form of social media, the column connected readers who mailed in recipe requests, recipes, and good-ole-fashioned kitchen advice. The Globe retired this vestige of the Betty Crocker Era in 2006, blaming the Internet for killing it. We still miss Chatters, and think The Globe should reboot it (with a chill name, of course), because home cooking loves community.
After all, you never know where you’ll discover a gem—like these spiced pecans.
(adapted from The Boston Globe “Confidential Chat” column)
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup cold water
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 pound pecans
Simmer all ingredients together in a flat-bottomed pan. Cook until syrup spins a thread. Stir quickly just until sugar crystallizes, then take off of heat. Spread nuts out on parchment paper to cool.