The Washington Post

Candied Lavender Pecans

Candied Lavender Pecans 2.000

Goran Kosanovic for The Washington Post

Jul 5, 2016

These make wonderful cocktail munchies, snacks and garnishes for salads and cheese plates. If you can bear to part with them, package them nicely and give as a gift to somebody you really like.

For gently flavored sugar, use only a tablespoon of dried lavender; add up to 2 tablespoons for a pronounced lavender aroma and taste.

Make Ahead: Ready the lavender sugar in advance so it will be on hand whenever the craving for these addictive nibbles hits. You need only a quarter of the scented sugar to prepare the nuts, so you'll have enough sugar to make multiple batches in future. The lavender sugar can also easily be subbed for regular granulated sugar in baked goods, sweet sauces, fruit dishes, whipped cream, teas and other beverages. The nuts can be stored in an airtight container at a cool room temperature for up to 2 weeks or refrigerated for up to 1 month.

Where to Buy: Buy only lavender designed for cooking purposes; it is available at several stores in the Washington area, including La Cuisine in Alexandria; Balducci's and Williams-Sonoma in Bethesda; David's Natural Market in Columbia, Gambrills and Forest Hills; Penzeys Spices in Falls Church and Rockville; and area Spice & Tea Exchange shops. Some retailers sell dried culinary lavender prepackaged; others sell in bulk, and you can buy what you need.


Servings:
2 cups

When you scale a recipe, keep in mind that cooking times and temperatures, pan sizes and seasonings may be affected, so adjust accordingly. Also, amounts listed in the directions will not reflect the changes made to ingredient amounts.

Tested size: 2 cups

Ingredients
  • For the lavender sugar
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons dried culinary lavender buds (see headnote)
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • For the candied pecans
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt, plus more as needed
  • 2 cups unsalted pecan halves

Directions

For the lavender sugar: Combine the lavender (to taste) and 1/2 cup of the sugar in a food processor. Process until the lavender is ground very finely, 4 to 5 minutes. (Alternatively, grind the lavender and sugar in a spice grinder for 1 minute.) Stir the ground lavender sugar through a fine-mesh sieve, then return the sieved mixture to the processor. Add the remaining 1 1/2 cups sugar; process for 1 minute or until well combined. You'll use 1/2 cup of the lavender sugar for the pecans; reserve the rest in an airtight container at room temperature.

For the candied pecans: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with heavy-duty aluminum foil.

Use a wooden spoon to stir together 1/2 cup of the lavender sugar and the 1/4 teaspoon of salt in a large ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. Cook, stirring constantly, until the sugar starts to melt, about 2 minutes. Working carefully, continuously stir and scrape the sugar into a pool until most is melted, being careful to avoid splashups.

Stir in the pecans until coated; this should take about 2 minutes. Don’t worry if the coating isn’t completely even. If at any point the pan smokes or the sugar or pecans smell burned, lift the pan from the burner and continue to stir.

Immediately transfer the skillet to the oven. Roast (middle rack), stirring every 3 or 4 minutes, until nicely browned and fragrant, but not burned; this should take 7 to 10 minutes.

Remove from the oven; immediately sprinkle over additional garnishing salt, if desired. Stir the pecans well, then spread them out on the foil-lined pan. Use forks to separate any clumps or clusters; don’t touch the nuts, as they will be extremely hot. Let them cool completely, then break up any remaining clumps with your hands before serving or storing.

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Recipe Source

From cookbook author Nancy Baggett.

Tested by Nancy Baggett.

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Avg. Rating (8)

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Nutritional Facts

Calories per 1/4-cup serving: 220


% Daily Values*

Total Fat: 18g 28%

Saturated Fat: 2g 10%

Cholesterol: 0mg 0%

Sodium: 65mg 3%

Total Carbohydrates: 16g 5%

Dietary Fiber: 2g 8%

Sugar: 13g

Protein: 2g


*Percent Daily Value based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Total Fat: Less than 65g

Saturated Fat: Less than 20g

Cholesterol: Less than 300mg

Sodium: Less than 2,400mg

Total Carbohydrates: 300g

Dietary Fiber: 25g

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