To make the pecans place a medium size non-stick skillet over medium heat. Melt 1/2 tablespoon unsalted butter in the skillet and add the pecans. Toss to coat. Combine 1 tablespoon sugar with 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon and sprinkle over the buttered pecans. Turn down the heat to medium-low and cook stirring constantly until the sugar melts and the pecans become shiny. This should only take a few minutes. Sprinkle with sea salt an place the sugared pecans on a parchment lined baking sheet to cool. Set aside.
Peel the sweet potatoes and cut each into three equal pieces. Place the potatoes in a medium saucepan and cover with water. Heat on medium-high until they come to a boil. Reduce heat to maintain a simmer and cook until fork tender, 15- 20 minutes.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a one cup measure, whisk together the milk and egg. Set aside.
Cut the oranges in half and scoop out the pulp and juice. (I used a grapefruit spoon) Reserve 2 tablespoons of the orange juice to add to the potatoes. Slice off a tiny portion of the bottom of each orange half to help it sit flat without tipping over. You don't need to trim very much. Place the orange halves on a parchment lined baking sheet.
Drain the cooked sweet potatoes. Off-Heat, put 3 tablespoons of butter in the still hot pan and cover with the drained potatoes. Add the vanilla, 1/3 cup sugar, orange juice and the milk/egg mixture. Using a hand mixer beat on low until blended. Divide the mixture between the 8 orange halves. You may have a little left over and if so, scoop into a small ramekin coated with cooking spray bake with the oranges.
Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and top with the cinnamon pecans. Serve warm or room temperature.