Aunt Sally's Candy Shop
in New Orleans in
the French Quarter on the
site of the
Old Slave Block
Sally's Candy Shop was the first business
to reopen in the French Quarter after hurricane Katrina. My grandfather,
was the brother of Pierre
Bagur Sr who with his wife
Diane Jacques Bagur founded Aunt Sally's Praline Shops in the early
were second generation New Orleanians of French Creole descent.
Pierre Bagur Sr. and his wife Diane Jacquet Bagur
had four children. By now, there are numerous great great grandchildren.The
third and fourth generations are dedicated to carrying out Pierre and
With the help
of talented candy makers, Pierre and Diane developed
their own delicate version of the New Orleans signature candy, the “praline." It
was made over a gas stove in a copper pot and hand-poured,
praline after praline onto marble surfaces, just as it is today.
Aunt Sally's® pralines,
are made daily at 810 Decatur
Street in the historic French Quarter and
packaged individually or by six and twelve pralines. Originally they
were packaged in hand-made cotton bales and sold by roving vendors
with donkey and buggy throughout the French Quarter. But even in
the early years, visitors requested and received shipments
of pralines by mail worldwide, long
before mail order became popular.
What is a Creole
New Orleans style pralines have their origin in 18th century France. The chef
of a French Marshal and diplomat named Cesar du Plessis-Praslin (pronounced
prah-lin) invented a recipe for coating almonds in sugar to be consumed
as a digestive aid. He named the confection pralines, after Marshal Praslin.
Today, the word “praline” is
common throughout France and Belgium to describe any confection made
How did the praline get
In the days
when it took months
to travel by ship from New Orleans to Paris, a southern
back the praline from Paris to the head cook of his plantation.
Instead of almonds, she improvised and
used a Louisiana nut called a pecan (pronounce peakon) and sugar
made from Louisiana sugar cane. Instead
of one nut she threw in a handful of pecans for good measure.
Entrepreneurial black women in New Orleans during the mid 1800's
realized the popularity of the praline and found considerable success
in selling them out of baskets on the streets. Thus the Praline
became synonymous with New Orleans and with delicious candy, "the
disks of pure joy," desired by everyone.