Stir together 1/4 cup sugar and 1 cup warm water until sugar dissolves. Add pecan halves, and soak 10 minutes. Drain, discarding sugar mixture.
Combine 2 tablespoons sugar, chili powder, and red pepper. Add pecans, tossing to coat. Place on a lightly greased baking sheet.
Bake at 350° for 10 minutes or until pecans are golden brown, stirring once.
Chef Franklin Biggs, Homewood, Alabama