Divinity Candy Interrupted (recipe: Divinity)
I don’t recall exactly how the conversation came about, but as a new bride, I discovered that my husband loves Divinity candy. Divinity is a traditional nougat-like Southern candy made with vanilla and pecans. Depending on the weather, it can require a rather lengthy mix time in order for it to set up. I had just gotten a new hand mixer as a wedding gift from our family friend, Esta Price. New husband, new hand mixer. Divinity candy was my destiny.
Over the years, I made Divinity many times at Christmas. Some years the process would go off without a hitch. And then there were the years where my little hand mixer would overheat causing me to have to interrupt the critical mixing step. As the hot sugar syrup was mixed, it thickened and caused too much of a strain on my little mixer’s motor. After many years, I thought I should give up making Divinity until I could afford a stand mixer. By this time, the little hand mixer was getting up in age and I would be heartbroken if it conked out on me.
As life goes, all the stars didn’t line up just right in order for me to resume Divinity making for a long time. But, it finally happened. I was able to buy a stand mixer and I haven’t missed a Christmas of making Divinity since then. I still have the hand mixer 36 years later and I use it often. Sacrificing Divinity for years was the right thing to do. The hand mixer means a lot to me. You couldn’t buy a hand mixer today and expect to have it 36 years from now.
It’s avocado green and I think it’s just lovely.
I still have the same husband, too. He’s as handsome as the mixer is lovely. They were both built to last. I”ll leave you to draw your own analogy about the durability of today’s hand mixers and husbands.
I wound up with a good mixer and a good husband. What else does a girl need? I’m forever grateful, indeed.
Y’all come see us!
They say you shouldn’t make Divinity when it rains because it’ll never set up properly. I haven’t tested out that theory. I make it when the sun shines. You’re supposed to make Divinity and cut hay when the sun shines.
2 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1/2 cup light corn syrup (I use Karo)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup water
2 egg whites
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 to 1 1/2 cup pecans, chopped
Combine sugar, corn syrup, salt and water in a 2 quart saucepan. Stir only until the sugar dissolves. Cook to 260 degrees (hard ball stage). I highly recommend using a food thermometer to make sure you get the syrup to the right temperature.
Beat egg whites until stiff peaks form. When the syrup is ready, slowly pour it over the egg whites while beating on high-speed. BE CAREFUL! The syrup is hot and it will burn the fool out of you if it splatters. The bread wrapper in the background sneaked in the picture. There’s one in every crowd.
Add vanilla and continue beating until the candy holds is shape.
Add pecans, mix well. I didn’t measure the amount but I’m estimating 1 1/2 cups.
Drop by teaspoons onto waxed paper. These are my husband’s hands helping me make his candy.
Look at all the candy that stuck to the spoon and the spatula. On, darn. Somebody must eat this. You can spray your utensils with non-stick spray to keep candy from sticking. We NEVER do that. We choose to suffer through and eat the candy, instead.
We got 45 pieces out of this batch. Divinity delivery is right on track!