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Thursday, Jan. 26, 2012

Treat Bake Shop's Candied Pecans With a Kick

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Sarah Marx Feldner is just one step away from realizing her longtime dream of owning a bake shop, but it's a big one: finding a retail storefront. She's scouting locations now, hoping to find one with a kitchen where she can make her triple chocolate truffle cookies and salted butter caramel. In the meantime, she's launched her Treat Bake Shop without a retail home, focusing on one of her most unique specialties: spiced pecans.

Made in numbered small batches from freshly harvested Georgia pecans, they're quite unlike the sugared nuts found at local summer festivals. They're sweet and salty, but they also pack a gentle kick, a slow heat that lingers in the back of your mouth. It won't make your eyes water, but it's just enough to stop you from scarfing down the pecans like candy.

“We're not going for an immediate burn,” Feldner says. “It's more of a subtle heat that dances on the tongue.”

The spiced pecans are sold in handsomely labeled 7-ounce glass jars for $14.95, and are available at Larry's Brown Deer Market and through www.thetreatbakeshop.com. Feldner is offering free, personal delivery to Milwaukee residents.

The pecans pair well with a number of dishes, she says.

“I think they're really great with a cheese plate with cheese and fruit; you can either serve them on the plate or on the side,” she says. “If you're having a cocktail party, just having bowls of them out works really well, and they're also really great on salads—and on top of ice cream, of course, because everything is better with ice cream.”