Pecan Praline Sauce
1Food Processor: Pulse the pecans and 1/4 cup of granulated sugar until a fine meal forms but before the nuts start to release their oils. If you don't have a food processor, don't worry, pop it into a ziploc and pound it with a mallet or a hammer.
2Mixer (w paddle): Mix the butter briefly on medium speed for 5 to 10 seconds. Add the nut mixture (with sugar in previous step) and the remaining 1/2 cup granulated sugar and beat together until the butter mixture is aerated and pale in color, approximately 4 minutes. Briefly beat in the vanilla. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula to bring the batter together.
3Bowl: Whisk together the flour and salts.
4Mixer: Add the dry ingredients all at once to the mixer until dough comes together but still looks shaggy, approximately 30 seconds. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl to bring the batter together. Mix for another 10 seconds on medium speed. Remove the bowl from the stand mixer. Bring dough together by hand.
5Wrap: Stretch out a several sheets of plastic wrap on a work surface and put the dough on top. Shape the dough with your hands into logs about 8 inches long and wrap each one separately. Refrigerate until chilled throughout, and then remove from refrigerator for their final shaping. Roll into a smooth log. Roll onto crushed nuts (I used beer nuts). Then, cut into 3/4"-1" sized medallions.
6Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a couple of half sheet pans with parchment paper.
7Bake for 8 minutes, rotate, and bake for another 4 minutes or until just light brown. Let cookies cool on rack.
Pecan Praline Sauce
1In a pot, melt the butter over medium heat. Mix in the maple syrup, sugar, vanilla, and salts and stir until homogenous. Bring the mixture to a boil and boil for 3 minutes to thicken. Pour in the heavy cream, stirring to combine. Let the mixture reduce for 3 to 4 minutes, or until it lightly coats the back of a spoon. Stir in the nuts. You will have approximately 2 1/2 cups of sauce.
2Pour over baked cookies in dollops. Be sure to get a few pecans on each cookie. Serve warm!