National Pralines Day is observed annually on June 24th. This day honors the praline, a confection made from nuts (whether in whole pieces or ground) and sugar syrup. Pralines may also refer to any chocolate cookie containing the ground powder of nuts.
There are a variety of pralines to be enjoyed:
- Belgian Pralines – contain a hard chocolate shell with a softer, sometimes liquid, filling.
- French Pralines – a combination of almonds and caramelized sugar.
- American Pralines – contain milk or cream and are softer and creamier, resembling fudge.
At the Chateau of Vaux-le-Vicomte during the 17th century, French sugar industrialist, Marshal du Plessis-Praslin (1598-1675), originally inspired the early pralines. These first pralines were whole almonds, individually coated in caramelized sugar.
The powder made by grinding up sugar-coated nuts is called pralin. This is an ingredient in many types of cake, pastries and ice creams. When this powder is mixed with chocolate, it becomes praliné in French, which gave birth to what is known in French as chocolat praliné.
The French settlers brought their recipe into Louisiana, an area of the United States where both sugar cane and pecan trees were plentiful. During the 19th century, New Orleans chefs substituted pecans for almonds, added cream to thicken the confection and thus created what is known throughout the Southern United States as the praline.
HOW TO OBSERVE
Create your own batch with this recipe for pralines. We enjoy this Louisiana tradition so much we found another recipe for pralines for you to celebrate. Of course, you can stop by your favorite confectionery and enjoy a few with friends and family. Use #NationalPralinesDay on social media.
Within our research, we were unable to find the creator and origin of National Praline Day.