Friday, November 30, 2007

caramel pecan logs

I didn't purposefully have Mary from the Nativity set up like that. HF thought I was being sacrilegious. Anyway, this lovely candy pictured above is what we call a Caramel Pecan Log. We make them every Christmas and give them to people. They are seriously so delicious and addicting. I have also noticed that if we give them to people that might be expecting lavish gifts from us, one of these usually does the trick and they don't remember that we didn't spend all kinds of money on them for Christmas, but gave them this really unique and utterly delcious treat that they will always remember. So basically, it gets us out of the dog house with HF's family at Christmastime.

I'm calling it a family recipe. I know that my mom and her side of the family have been making these. It seems like many people haven't heard of them. Maybe it's a western thing. I don't know, but our family has always made these it seems. The white inside is a fondant. A creamy, smooth, buttery, sugary fondant. Wrapped around the fondant is homemade caramel sprinkled with pecans. I don't like pecans, or nuts in general, but I will eat them in this without hesitation. I'm telling you, if you make this for people, it will impress them and they will ask for more or for the recipe. You won't hear the end of it. These are awesome. They make great gifts for co-workers, bosses, teachers, friends, enemies, anyone. My mom made them for our school teachers every year. I was totally teacher's pet. These can be a bit tricky to make, but totally worth the effort.

caramel pecan logs

make caramel:
2 cups brown sugar
1 cup Karo syrup
2 sticks butter
1 can Eagle brand milk
1 teaspoon vanilla

Cook caramel to firm ball stage. You can test this with candy thermometer, or the water method. Pour onto large cookie sheet covered with chopped pecans. When cool, cut into rectangles that will fit over fondant when rolled.

make fondant:
2 cups granulated sugar
1/2 stick butter
1 1/2 teaspoon Karo syrup
1 cup cream
1 tsp. vanilla

Combine all ingredients except vanilla in heavy saucepan. Bring to a boil. DO NOT STIR. Cook to between soft and firm ball. Remove and let cool until able to handle (110°). Beat until changes color and becomes fudge-like (loses its gloss). Add vanilla. Knead until smooth on buttered board. Mold into 6 log shapes (6-8 inches long, or whatever your preference is). Refrigerate fondant logs until chilled/firm. Place in the center of a caramel rectangle and roll and shape caramel completely around fondant until covered. Then wrap in wax paper and gift with additional wrapping paper wrapped around wax paper. May keep refrigerated. To serve, just unwrap, and slice into wheels.

Thanks mom, for helping me make these this year after Thanksgiving. She did most of the work. I had to keep leaving and throwing up. I don't really know why, but seems to happen on Thanksgiving every year, before even eating. I think it's the handling of the raw Turkey.

1 comment:

nora lee said...

yum.