Of course you would serve a sweet and salty roasted nut from the South with Maker's Mark.

Did you honestly think you could prepare for the Super Bowl in just a couple of days?  Did you say to yourself, “Well, I guess since New Orleans in playing in the Super Bowl I could just use this old Hurricane mix I had laying around the house.”  Or even, “But I need to get my Pro Bowl party out of the way first!  And the Senior Bowl!  I cannot even begin to think about my Super Bowl party until next week.”

WELL SUCK IT UP NANCY BECAUSE THIS IS THE LAST TIME YOU CAN EAT LIKE A PIG UNTIL NEXT SEPTEMBER.  You either start planning and cooking now or you will be stuck fighting some I-don’t-care-football-but-maybe-I-will-get-laid-if-I-get-out-of-the-house douchecake in an American Apparel hoodie over the last bag of Cool Ranch Doritos at the Silver Lake Vons next Saturday.

“But Sarah, I was going to make a giant muffaletta or a pot of gumbo for my Super Bowl party.  That should feed everyone.”  Great.  What do you feed everyone for the remaining three hours of your party?  If your main course is the game, then what is your halftime show?  What are your funny commercials that require you to share 3D glasses with six of your friends and sixty of their filthy 3D thumbprints?  Are you ready for people to start rooting through your drawers looking for more snacks?  You need to have many, many, supporting dishes for the Super Bowl.  For every Drew Brees, there are several lineman there to block for him, and for every Peyton Manning dive to the ground, there are several lineman to throw under the bus for not blocking for him!  This is a team sport and your Super Bowl spread needs to reflect that just one or two dishes do not make a buffet.

Are you willing to go to a Super Bowl party and run the risk of them not having enough snacks? And no, showing up with a six-pack of beer is not enough!  That’s about a bottle a beer an hour JUST FOR YOURSELF, so no, you did not bring anything to share.  So you will sack up and make at least one item to bring to the party.

Here’s the plan.  For the next 14 days I will post easy little recipes to supplement your Super Bowl planning.  Small things that will make the difference between a routine Super Bowl party and a spectacular, winning Super Bowl party.  Like place kickers.  (Looking for larger items?  The archives are filled with big ticket meal-type items if you want to search on your own for something, but we’ll be sure to add a couple of new dishes over the next couple of weeks.)

Are you a Colts or a Saints fan?  Congratulations!  If you care more about your food for the Super Bowl then you really should give up watching football entirely!  It’s true!  Last season during the Steelers Super Bowl run I could have given a fuck about making sure I had all the right food for the right party!  Who can eat?  You still have fucking football that matters to watch! Let the rest of the fans worry about what you’re going to nervously shove in your face two weeks from now.  Not like you’re actually going to taste the food going down.  (Or conversely, coming back up depending on how your team plays.)

And oh, if you’re a Colts fan, I really don’t believe you.  You’re a Manning fan.  That’s fine.  Embrace it.  I know about a half a dozen Colts fans — outside of internet friends that is — and none of them are from Indianapolis, most of them went to University of Tennessee, and all of them unabashedly love Peyton Manning.  No shame.  Just admit it so we don’t have to really care about that flat stretch of land around a large mall and racetrack.

Day 1 of 14 Days of Super Bowl Recipes:  Salted Honey Roasted Pecans

You will need…

You better have some parchment paper for your cookie sheet. You don't have parchment paper? Why do you hate your cookie sheets? Baking without parchment paper is tantamount to using your vagina (or penis) without protection. Who knows what's going to happen once you get going so best to be safe instead of sorry. Plus, easier clean up.

2 cups of whole (or pieces, I buy what is ever on sale) of pecans.
Honey
Sugar
Kosher salt (Table salt is fine, but use less of it because it actually does have more sodium in it and tastes more salty.)
Hot water

Preheat your oven to 325º.

There is no way to make this a "clean" post. I refuse to apologize for this fact.

Drizzle about two to three tablespoons of honey on your nuts.

What's that you say? The Friday Football Foodie has been as absent as place kicking during the playoffs? Too bad. Life sometimes gets busy and some times THE STEELERS BLOWING THEIR POST SEASON CHANCES MAKES YOU SO DEPRESSED YOU CANNOT LOOK AT YOUR OWN BLOG, LIKE HAVING AN UGLY CHILD.

Pour about a 1/4 – 1/3 cup of hot water over the honeyed nuts and stir.  The hot water will help evenly coat your pecans with honey, and keep them moist during roasting.

You could also make this recipe with walnuts, but I hate walnuts. Tasteless nuts with no room at my table or in my brownies.

Sprinkle on a generous pinch of kosher salt, about a teaspoon or so, and about 1-2 tablespoons of sugar.  Mix well.

If you want to spice them up a little bit with some freshly ground pepper or chili flakes, you can.  Personally, I prefer the sweet and salty mix.

Note how light the pecans are.

Pour everything — including the honey-sugar-water still at the bottom of your bowl –  onto your lined cookie sheet.  Feel like gambling and using an unlined pan?  You’re either going to be doing dishes for a week or just buying yourself a new cookie sheet.  Your call.

Bake for 15 minutes.

Notice, a little darker now.

Take the pan out of the oven, add a 1/2 teaspoon of salt and another tablespoon of sugar, and stir until evenly coated.

Put the pan back in the oven for 15 more minutes.

Darker...

Repeat the step above.  You should have hardly any water left on the pan, so if you need a touch more hot water just to make sure the salt and sugar are evenly covering your pecans, you can.

Even darker...

Repeat a third time, but omit the salt.  You should be tossing just nuts, syrup, and sugar for the last go around.

Place back in the oven for 15 more minutes.  (45 minutes of total cooking time.)

Once they are this dark, they are done.

Remove from oven and spread on a clean piece of parchment paper to cool and dry.

Greatest thing about these roasted pecans?  I think they taste like bacon.

If kept in a sealed container, they should last for about two to three weeks before turning, leaving you plenty of time to make a second batch in case this one “disappears” before your Super Bowl party.

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8 Responses to Salted Honey Roasted Pecans: 14 Days of Super Bowl Recipes

  1. Chief Wahoo says:

    Nicely done, and welcome back.

  2. DrBundy says:

    Long time listener, first time caller. I finally have a dog in the Super Bowl hunt since my Saints made Favre consider retirement (again) last week. For the first time in my Super Bowl party history (over a decade) my wife said “Will you consider catering this year?”. Any other year that would be blasphemy. We’re not Ole Miss types around here, we don’t *gasp* CATER our parties. However, this year we’re going that route for at least some of the food. I like the idea of letting someone else make the big mess while I concentrate my MoJo on willing a Saints win. Your snacks sound like a great way for me to handle the multitudes of drunken coonasses (and their kids) during the long grazing period between actual eating.

    One comment – my wife is a diabetic and I can’t handle much sugar, so when baking we substitute honey for sugar quite often. Your recipe calls for both, so in this case I would use more honey and less sugar. We use a locally produced honey – according to one allergy specialist, consuming locally produced honey can help with allergy sensitivity – that is sweeter than many of the store brand honeys available. Plus it is a better choice for a diabetic. Not the best choice, mind, but a better choice. Also, we use raw sugar instead of refined sugar. Again, a slightly better choice than regular sugar. None of this makes this a diabetic friendly snack, but it is a way to make things slightly more healthful. It’s tough being a foodie in South Louisiana and still try to eat healthfully, but it can be done with a little creativity. Besides…offseasons were made for working off the football pounds.

    Keep up the great work!

    • Dr Bundy – First off, congrats to your Saints! The good news is that the next few recipes are sugar free for the most part.

      And you really don’t need to need much honey, even when you re-coat the nuts some. When I was first taught this recipe, (by a lunatic store manager at a gourmet shop I worked at in high school, who loved to make these in the back ovens even though we did not sell them), it was with diluted honey cream. Since honey cream is hard to come by, I use regular honey but if you can find it that might make your work easier.

  3. Kim says:

    Sarah thanks for responding to my other post, I making a lot of your food here for a big super-bowl party, just want to know if the pecans have slightly overcooked taste or did my oven overcook them, I only did them 2 x in the oven because they seem done. I didn’t want to burn them.

    • sarah sprague says:

      Once the nuts are candied they should be cooked completely through and have a smokey, meaty taste to them. If they seem done to you, let them cool a bit and taste.

  4. Elaine says:

    Made these today & had to throw them out bc they taste horrible. Wasted 3 cups of beautiful pecans. Should have experimented with 1 cup 1st, I’m really disappointed. I was planning on taking these to an open house for the hostess. Now I have to run out & buy a bottle of wine.

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