When it comes to holiday gifts, creating the perfect blend of useful and fun can be difficult. Nothing says you care like crafting something handmade for your colleagues, loved ones, and clients. Pecan gift tins are an increasingly popular choice in this arena. If you live in an area where pecans are abundant, consider putting together a perfectly blended customized tin. Candy, pralines, spiced nuts and more: all are great choices for any occasion.
One of the best ways to eat pecans is in candied form. While it’s not terribly waistline-friendly, pecan candy is easy to make and looks extremely impressive when delivered in a lovely tin. Try toasting whole nuts with a little melted butter. Melt a cup or so of sugar over a medium flame until it turns copper-colored, then dunk each individual nut in. Allow to cool until it has a crisp sugar shell. Finish these bite-size treats off by coating them in melted dark chocolate, offsetting the intense sweetness of the sugary nut. Finish off with a few flakes of sea salt to bring out the flavor.
The classic praline is a Southern tradition for a reason. Begin by melting brown sugar over a medium flame, then stirring in equal parts sweetened condensed milk and heavy cream. Add a pat of butter and stir in toasted pecans when the mixture hits 265F on the candy thermometer. Allow to cook until just a shade darker, then spoon onto parchment or wax paper. Allow to cool completely until solidified, then stuff into tins with pretty lining paper.
Not interested in solid candy? Add more heavy cream to the mixture to turn it into a praline sauce that can be drizzled over everything from ice cream to bread pudding to even salad greens. Don’t worry about shipping: the high sugar content and long cooking time will keep things from curdling. However, the recipient should refrigerate the jars after opening.
If you’re after something more savory, herb spiced nuts are a classic and elegant holiday gift. Simply melt some butter over medium-high heat, then add in nuts and stir well. Sautee, moving nuts around constantly, until they’re crisp and beautifully golden brown. Add a good shake of ground rosemary, cayenne, and sea salt, as well as a pinch of brown sugar for a spicy-sweet flavor.
So stop worrying about the holiday season. With these homemade pecan gift tins in your arsenal, your entire list of giftees is sure to be happy, impressed, and full of delicious hand-made treats!
Don’t wait until the last minute for holiday shopping: order pecan gift tins far in advance. Get more information on the styles and varieties available at www.caneriverpecan.com.