My pralines came out too hard

1,429
26
Joined Mar 12, 2005
My pralines came out too hard, they are like pecans inside rock hard candy.

What did I do wrong?

The sugar/water mixture is suppose to be heated beyond the hard crack stage, correct?
 
436
13
Joined Apr 20, 2007
you over cooked the sugar..

"Cook until the mixture reaches 239 degrees with a candy thermometer. If you don't have a candy thermometer, bring it to the soft ball stage."
 
1,429
26
Joined Mar 12, 2005
Thank you, that it what I thought.

The cookbook I have is incorrect and says to take the sugar past the hardcrack stage and bring it close to 375deg.
 
436
13
Joined Apr 20, 2007
never trust a cookbook. I find many times there is a LOT of misleading information in them.

Makes me feel that they do it on purpose ...lol ( or maybe I'm just paranoid? lol)
 
1,429
26
Joined Mar 12, 2005
I find that too, lol, its like do they even try these recipes before they publish them?
 
38
10
Joined Dec 23, 2006
Paul Prudhomme has a great tip in one of his early books: when the mixture makes strings on the side of the bowl it's ready (I use the cook, cool and beat method). I have always tested temps, and the only perfect pralines I've ever made have been when I stopped at his "string" stage. I'll see strings and still have the wrong temp, keep going to the correct temp, and have a failure. But every time I stop at strings I have a sale-able product.

-From "Not a candy maker but loves a good Praline" Pat
 

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