Chile Coban Pecans (Pecan Crack)

This recipe, as most of my recipes, has a story behind it...

A Chef friend came to stay with me last summer for a few days because we both were attending the same conference in my town. We could catch up, show him around town, hang out...and of course attend the conference together. It just so happened that he brought me some gifts. One gift was several pounds of pecans.

A short time later another friend came back from a trip to Guatemala and gave me a package of Chile Coban, a very specific tasting dried pepper with a bit of smoke flavor. 

[Fast Forward a bit in time...]
Around the Fall holidays I was using a spiced nut recipe because I wanted to create some Christmas gifts and snacks that had a personal touch. But I was very unhappy with the results I was getting from a highly rated internet recipe. BAM! I had a stroke of genius, "Tyrone, why don't you just create your own recipe and use what you have on hand?!". [You won't ever convince me talking to yourself doesn't have its benefits!] And that's how this recipe came to be! 

A personal "Thanks!" goes out to Gary H. and PW. (aka - Pastor Will). This recipe has been tested by hundreds of palates by now with great reviews. The "heat" in this recipe is only noted in taste, not burn.

PS. To all my food service friends, this makes a full sheet pan (2 or 3 of the home cookie/sheet pans) These are best a couple days after making, they get a little crunchier and taste seems to "mature".


3 egg white
1 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 tablespoons ground cinnamon
1/2 tablespoon ground cloves
1 1/2 tablespoon salt
1/4 teaspoon Chile Coban

Or use cayenne, chipotle powder, something with some heat you like.

3 tablespoon vanilla extract
3 pounds pecan halves

Or walnuts, mixed nuts, BUT pecan is my favorite for this.


Preheat oven to 300 degrees F (150 degrees C). Coat a baking sheet with cooking spray or parchment paper.

In a large bowl beat egg white until foamy. Stir in brown sugar, cinnamon, cloves, salt, Chile Coban, (or substitute), and vanilla.

Whip to "melted marshmallow consistency" Add nuts, and stir to coat. Spread evenly onto prepared pan.

Bake for 30 minutes, until well toasted and golden brown. Remove from oven, and cool completely. Store in an airtight container.

The end result...

Pecan Crack

And it's delicious!
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