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Looking for a different housewarming gift or stocking stuffer? Try homemade candy! They'll love you for your thoughtfulness...and for the yummy goodies!
What You'll Need:
- 2 cups pecan halves
- 2 cups sugar
- 3/4 cup milk
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
What To Do:
- Line 2 large rimmed baking sheets with waxed paper. Place the pecans in clusters of three about 2 inches apart on the waxed paper.
- In a medium-sized saucepan, combine the sugar, milk, and baking soda over medium heat. Cook for 18 to 20 minutes, stirring frequently, until it reaches the soft ball stage (see Note). Remove from the heat and stir in the butter and vanilla.
- Continue stirring for 3 to 5 more minutes, or until the syrup is smooth and creamy and has thickened. Spoon a heaping tablespoon of the syrup mixture over each cluster of pecans. Allow to cool for 1 to 2 hours, then peel from the waxed paper and serve, or place in an airtight container until ready to serve.
Makes about 3 dozen.
The soft ball stage is reached when a candy thermometer reaches between 234 degree F and 240 degree F. To test without a thermometer, remove the pan from the heat and drop 1/2 teaspoon of the syrup into a cup of cold water. Remove the cooled syrup from the water and work it with your fingers to form a soft ball. If the ball flattens between your fingers, the syrup has reached the soft ball stage.
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