Friday, February 22, 2013

Pralinata di Nocciole e Mandorle (Hazelnut and Almond Praline)

Are you hosting an Oscars party this weekend? I actually don't know of a single person who really does - hardly anyone I know watches the Academy Awards at all, much less plans a "viewing" for them. But, if you happen to be one of those cinephiles that can't get enough of the red carpet and silver screen, you'll need something that will impress your guests more than the most glittery dress walking down the runway.

Nuts for Praline!However, there's no need to break out the baking pans and flour to create a spectacular dessert. With a few ingredients, a pot and a few hours, you'll have a gorgeous, glistening praline on your hands, ready to go. All you'll need to do is scoop out your favourite ice cream (I'm partial to this one as a praline pairing), stick a few shards on top and - voila! Elegance at your fingertips.

I adapted the recipe from Grace Massa Langlois' book Grace's Sweet Life: Homemade Italian Desserts from Cannoli, Biscotti, and Tiramisu to Torte, Tartufi, and Struffoli, using part brown sugar for flavour and half and half almonds and hazelnuts. I also opted to add the nuts to the sugar instead of just pouring the sugar overtop, which meant a more even coat on them. I definitely suggest a SilPat for this though - for some reason the parchment in round 1 didn't want to play nicely and stuck to the candy like nothing else.

Pralinata di Nocciole e Mandorle

Shared with  Foodie Friends Friday

Pralinata di Nocciole e Mandorle (Hazelnut and Almond Praline)
Makes 7 (1-oz) servings or about 1 1/3 cups pieces
1/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 tbsp golden corn syrup
1/2 tsp coarse sea salt
3 tbsp water
2/3 cup toasted hazelnuts
2/3 cup toasted almonds
  1. Line a baking sheet with silicone (you can try well-greased parchment but don't opt for anything else, this stuff STICKS!) and set aside.
  2. In a saucepan, mix the sugars, corn syrup, salt and water. Place over high heat and bring to a boil, stirring until sugar liquefies.
  3. Once sugar is liquid, stop stirring and cook until the mixture reaches 320F, occasionally swirling the pot to redistribute the sugar.
  4. When the sugar reaches temperature, remove from heat and immediately pour in the nuts.
  5. Stir to coat well and scrape out onto the lined trays. Set aside to cool 3 hours.
Amount Per Serving
Calories: 221.4
Total Fat: 13.9 g
Cholesterol: 0.0 mg
Sodium: 11.9 mg
Total Carbs: 25.8 g
Dietary Fiber: 2.7 g
Protein: 4.5 g