New Orleans is known for many things, including jazz, Mardi Gras, Cajun cuisine, unique cemeteries, and French and Spanish Creole architecture. But did you know that sugared pecans hold a spot on that list? Geaux Nuts, started by the mother-daughter duo of Barbara Gendler and Allison Kushnick of Scarsdale, is bringing the delicious snack to Westchester. Native to New Orleans, Gendler developed her own recipe for sugared meringue pecans, a twist on the New Orleans classic of pralines. Gendler loved to entertain in New Orleans and soon, the pecans became a staple of her parties.
When Kushnick moved to New York, she brought her mom’s delicious recipe with her, making it a signature product of her dessert company. When she closed the company, friends told her she had to keep selling the nuts. After Hurricane Katrina displaced Gendler in 2005, she moved to New York and eventually the duo formed Geaux Nuts in 2011. The family chose the name Geaux to try to “preserve the Southern aspect of the business and give back to a great city that went through a terrible disaster,” says Kushnick.
The pair sells many products, including brownies, cookies, and a flourless chocolate cake, however, their signature is a sugared meringue pecan. They currently sell six different types — original (cinnamon), white chocolate, dark chocolate, peanut butter, spice made with Cajun pepper, and “trash,” which is a cereal and pretzel coating.
The treats are made in Kushnick’s Scarsdale home, but the women have big dreams for the business and hope to grow and expand. Currently their products are sold in stores at Cherry Lawn Farm Market in New Rochelle and Village Prime Meats in Armonk. You can also find Gendler and Kushnick and their products at three farmers’ markets in the county: Hartsdale, Eastchester, and the New Rochelle Grand Market.
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