So you want to make Canadian Fire? Well come along with me and I will show you how to satisfy your sweet tooth while keeping warm on those cold winter nights but first some history. Canadian Fire is one part a culinary mash up and one part why the heck not. So sit right back and I will tell you brief tale of how it came into being. Every year for the holidays I make candied almonds. This year I was hankering for something different to break up the holiday grind. I first thought well what if I swap out the almonds for pecans but that was not enough so I swapped out sugar for maple syrup. This was better but not enough and that is when I realized I needed something spicy. So Siracha was introduced into the mix and Canadian Fire was born. So now without further ado here is how to make this delectable treat
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Step 1: The Tools and Ingredients
- A medium sauce pan or pot
- some sort of stirring/spreading device(I picked a spatula)
- measuring cup
- Non stick surface (I used a silicon backing sheet but parchment paper should work fine)
- Stove(if you are taking pictures of it like I was you should probably do a better job cleaning it first or the internet might judge you. :D As it stands I did my best to crop out the stove top as to spare you all the elder horrors that live there. )
- A hankering for adventure!(this is entirely optional but I find it helps when trying new things.)
- 1 cup(.24 liters) Maple syrup
- 1 table spoon(14.8 grams) cinnamon
- 2 table spoons(29.6 grams) of Siracha
- 1 cup of pecans (128 grams)
Step 2: The Mixening Aka Put It in a Pot!
For the first step pour the maple syrup into the pot then add the cinnamon and Siracha.(Leave the pecans out for now. If you put them in at this point they will absorb to much of the liquid and end up chewy.) Stir up the pot to evenly combine the Siracha and break up any cinnamon clumps. There that was easy now for the next step.
Step 3: Add Heat and Thicken
So crank your stove up to medium high heat and get your stirring arm warmed up it is in for quite the workout. You are going to bring the mixture up to a rolling boil. Once those bubble start forming you are not going to want to stop stirring or it might just burn. What we are doing in this step is boiling off the liquid in the syrup to get it to thicken up. If you look at the first picture you can see how tiny the bubbles are when the bubbles get bigger and the mixture gets thicker it is time to add the pecans. You can refer to the second picture to see how thick I let it get before adding the pecans. Now don't stop stirring and on to the next step.
Step 4: Can I Stop Stiring Yet?
Not quite yet. Now that the pecans have been added we need to boil this mixture down. There are two ways to figure out if your mixture has been boiled down enough. Being an American child of the 80's who loved the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles I stir and let it thicken till it has the consistency of the Ooze that our parents hated. If you don't want to wax nostalgic about green slime while cooking tasty treats or simply would like a more scientific method of determining when you are done. You can use a candy thermometer and set it to hard crack stage (300-310 degrees Fahrenheit or 148.89- 154.44 Degrees Celsius). If you have not gotten the mixture hot enough and pour it out it will be bendy like taffy instead of toffee. Don't worry though you can always put it back in a double boiler to get it the rest of the way there!
Step 5: Dump It Out and Wait
The title of this step pretty much says it all. Carefully dump the mixture out onto your non stick surface( if you did this the scientific way you know how hot this is. If you went the ooze route trust me you won't be mutating into anything but a person with second degree burns if you dump this on yourself.). Then using the spatula spread the mixture out so the pecans are not stacked all over each other. Now we wait until it has cooled.
Step 6: Chef Smash
Now that your Canadian Fire is cooled you can pick it up and eat it all yourself like one giant toffee candy or you can smash it into smaller bite sized chunks and share it with your friends! Well thanks for joining me on this culinary escapade and enjoy your sweet heat.