Pecans are definitely not my favorite nut, but I was willing to give this recipe a try because of the story behind it. Betty Lifshutz shared this recipe with her community when she was in her 70’s and included the following story with it:
“When we got married, I gave Archie the choice of having good times in the kitchen or the bedroom. As a result, we eat out a lot of the time. Therefore, the Sugar and Spice Pecans have become my specialty.”
Betty is quite a character. How can you not try this recipe after reading that? By the way, Betty is now in her 90’s and just as feisty as ever.
1 egg white
½ cup sugar
1 TB orange juice (frozen)
¼ tsp salt
½ tsp ground cloves
¼ tsp nutmeg
¼ tsp allspice
½ tsp cinnamon
4 cups pecan halves
Preheat your oven to 250°F.
In a bowl large enough to mix 4 cups of nuts, beat the egg white with a fork, then mix in the sugar.
Add the dollop of frozen orange juice and mix well with a spoon.
Add the salt, ground cloves, nutmeg, allspice and cinnamon and mix well.
Add the pecan halves and mix well.
Spray a cookie sheet with Pam.
Bake at 250°F for a total of 1 hour, stirring gently halfway through.
My Recipe Notes:
Betty’s daughter-in-law made a batch for me, and they were delicious! The pecans had just enough coating to taste the sugar and spice. I have a sweet tooth, so I decided to tweak her recipe a bit.
Thicker coating – I doubled all of her ingredients, but left the amount of nuts the same, 4 cups. The nuts were not only well-coated, but the extra sauce adhered the nuts together in small clusters, like a soft peanut brittle. It certainly made my sweet tooth happy! Add an extra cup of nuts if you don’t like your nuts to be drowned.
Nuts – I used half pecans and half walnuts, mixing them all together in the bowl of coating. I enjoyed this even more than straight pecans since I prefer walnuts over pecans. Don’t be shy about experimenting with your favorite nuts! I’m also thinking about using this same sauce with diced apples or pears.
Keto or Sugar-free – I’d originally planned to use white sugar as called for, but I didn’t have enough. In my doubled recipe only ¼ cup was white sugar, and ¾ cup was monk fruit granules. It turned out just as delectable.
Pam – I enjoy cooking and baking, but not cleaning. I took the lazy way out and substituted foil for the Pam. With my next batch, I’ll try out parchment paper.
Orange juice – We do not use frozen orange juice, and for whatever reason my grocery store did not carry the tiny tubes of OJ, only the larger cans. I hated to throw an entire can away after using only two tablespoons, so I replaced the lid and wrapped it tightly in a freezer baggie so I’ll have plenty for future batches.