Classic Southern Divinity is a nougat-like confection. It’s light and airy, and it’s often topped with pecans or dried fruit. One bite, and you’ll be hooked!
As a kid, I remember loving the Sunday paper – and it was all because of the cartoons. The newspaper itself was left for Mom and Dad while I immediately reached in and pulled out the ‘funny pages.’ Garfield was always the highlight for me. I mean who doesn’t love a sarcastic lasagna-eating cat? Calvin and Hobbes was close behind. Who knew that a boy and his stuffed tiger could teach us so much about life? (On a side note, the image of naked Calvin running through the house while his Mom gives him one of those ‘Mom looks’ reminds me of when Robbie gets out of the bathtub at night!)
Also on the list was Peanuts. Charlie Brown, Snoopy and the rest of the gang have earned a permanent spot in our culture. The strip stopped publication in the year 2000, but we still see plenty of Peanuts related items. Think about it. Whether it’s Valentine’s Day, Halloween or Christmas, you don’t have to look hard to find Charlie Brown, Snoopy or Woodstock. It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown is still one of my favorite cartoons to watch each October. I keep saying I’m going to pull a Linus and catch the Great Pumpkin one of these years!
Speaking of Linus, he and his sister Lucy would often find themselves fighting with each other – just like most siblings, right? That’s why it was particularly entertaining to come across one Peanuts comic strip where Linus heaped praise on his sister. The reason? Divinity. This sweet treat is enough to stop sibling feuds…at least for a couple of minutes!
Classic Southern Divinity
If you’ve never had divinity, then put this recipe on your list of things to make! This Classic Southern Divinity is a nougat-like confection made from egg whites, sugar and light corn syrup. It’s unique for sure. I describe divinity as a cross between meringues and marshmallows. It’s hard to the touch like meringues, but soft on the inside like marshmallows. However, unlike marshmallows, divinity is not chewy.
In fact, the texture reminds me a bit of those butter mints that you used to find at restaurants in the 1980’s. Do you remember those? I can still picture the big round container that you would tip over to get a handful of soft mints. I haven’t seen those in years!
Divinity is often seen in candy and confectionery stores in the South, and I remember one candy store in Charleston, SC that made the best divinity. Funny enough, it seems that divinity itself isn’t necessarily Southern. Rather, divinity is often topped with whole toasted pecans, and pecans are closely associated with Southern recipes. Either way, divinity is a light and airy treat when you’re in the mood for something sweet. The pecan on top is optional, but highly recommended! Enjoy!
Did you make a batch of this Classic Southern Divinity at home? Leave a comment, or snap a photo and tag me on Instagram (@Spicedblog). I’d love to see your version!
Classic Southern Divinity
- 2½ cups granulated sugar
- ½ cup light corn syrup
- ⅔ cup water
- 2 large egg whites room temperature
- 1½ tsp vanilla extract
- ¾ cup pecan halves lightly toasted
- Using a large saucepan, add sugar, corn syrup and water; stir and place over medium-low heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until sugar has completely dissolved. (Note: Use a large saucepan here as the mixture will approximately double in size as it’s heated.)
- Continue cooking, without stirring anymore, until temperature of mixture reaches 260°F. Meanwhile, beat egg whites with an electric mixer on high speed until stiff peaks form.
- With the mixer still running on medium speed, carefully pour hot syrup in a thin stream down the side of the mixing bowl. Add vanilla extract and continue beating on medium-high speed for 5-10 minutes or until mixture is no longer glossy and can hold its shape. (Tip: To test, drop a spoonful of divinity onto wax paper. If it holds its shape, then it’s ready. If it spreads out, then continue beating for another 1-2 minutes.)
- Using 2 spoons sprayed with non-stick baking spray, drop spoonfuls of mixture onto waxed paper.
- Gently push a pecan half into the center of each divinity.
- Let divinity stand at room temperature for 12 hours before storing in an airtight container.
Looking for more tasty dessert recipes? Check out these other favorites, too!