We watch a lot of basketball and football in our house. Okay, to be truthful, I feed a lot of people who watch football and basketball in our house. There are the usual chips and dips and sandwiches but every now and then, when I’m feeling like I want to get a bit more creative I make candied or spiced nuts. I know, it’s super easy to just pick up a bag or can or the ready-to-eat stuff but trust me on this, for less money and not much more than 20 minutes of prep and cook time you can have a really amazing treat that is guaranteed to make any victory sweeter and any defeat easier to deal with.
Sugared and Spiced Nuts (pareve)
Yields 1 lb.
- 1/3 cup brown sugar
- 2/3 cup white sugar
- 1 to 1½ teaspoon kosher salt
- Generous pinch of cayenne pepper or hot smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 lb. walnut or pecan halves
- 1 egg white, room temperature
- 1 Tablespoon water
- Preheat oven to 300°F. Place a sheet of parchment paper on a cookie sheet with sides and set it aside.
- In a bowl, combine the brown and white sugars, salt, cayenne and cinnamon. Mix well, you don’t want any lumps; set the mixture aside.
- In a bowl combine the egg white and water and whisk until frothy but not stiff. Add the nuts and stir to coat. Add the sugar mixture and mix to coat.
- Spread the coated nuts in a single layer on the prepared cookie sheet. Bake for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Remove from oven, and separate nuts as they cool.
- When completely cool, pour the nuts into a bowl, breaking up any that stick together.
Modified from a recipe from Elizabeth Karmel from yummly.com.
Rosemary Hazelnuts (pareve)
Yields 4 cups
- Oil for greasing
- 4 cups hazelnuts, toasted, husked
- 1 cup (packed) brown sugar
- 1/3 cup coarsely chopped fresh rosemary*
- 1 Tablespoon coarse kosher salt
- 3 to 5 dashes of hot sauce depending on your taste
(Rosemary needs to be checked before use.)
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Generously grease a 13x9x2-inch baking pan and large rimmed baking sheet with oil and place a piece of parchment paper on another cookie sheet and set them both aside.
- In a bowl, combine the hazelnuts, brown sugar, rosemary, salt and hot pepper sauce. Mix to coat. Place the coated nuts on the cookie sheet with the parchment paper.
- Bake until sugar melts, pulling out the rack stirring every 5 minutes for about 20 minutes. Remove the nuts from the oven and place them on the cookie sheet covered with oil. Cool the nuts completely.
- When cool, break apart the nuts (they may be clumped).
Store covered at room temperature.
My files, source unknown.
Spicy Fried Chickpeas (pareve)
Yields 3 to 4 cups
Not nuts but just as crunchy and delicious. You can fry these up to four hours before you want to serve them and warm them up in the broiler or microwave as your guests arrive. You can also serve them at room temperature, though they won’t be quite as crispy on the outside and creamy in the center.
- Vegetable oil (for deep-frying)
- 2 (15-oz.) cans chickpeas, drained, rinsed, drained again and patted dry
- ¾ teaspoon smoked hot paprika
- ¾ teaspoon kosher or sea salt
- In large heavy pot, heat 3 inches of oil until deep-fat thermometer registers 375 degrees.
- Carefully add chickpeas and fry until crisp and dark golden, 5-7 minutes.
- Using a slotted spoon, transfer the cooked chickpeas to paper towel-lined plate.
- Sprinkle immediately with paprika and salt and serve hot.
Modified from Epicurious, November 2007.
Kick-it-Up-a-Notch Spicy Mixed Nuts (dairy or pareve)
Yields approx. 3 cups
- 3 Tablespoons butter or margarine
- 1 lb. mixed nuts
- ¼ teaspoon soy sauce
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon paprika
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- ¼ teaspoon chili powder
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cumin
- In a large skillet, melt the butter then add the nuts and soy or Worcestershire sauce; cook and stir over a low heat for about 6 to 7 minutes.
- Drain the nuts on paper towels and then place the nuts in a large bowl.
- In another bowl combine the salt, paprika, cayenne, chili and cumin. Mix to combine and sprinkle the mixture over the nuts. Mix to coat.
- Cool completely.
Store in an airtight container at room temperature.
Modified from tasteofhome.com.
Citrus Nuts (pareve)
Yields 3 cups
You’ll need a candy thermometer for this one but it’s worth the extra effort.
- 3 cups walnuts or pecans or almonds (you can mix them too)
- 4 Tablespoons orange juice (only use fresh)
- 1 Tablespoon light corn syrup
- 1½ cups sugar
- ¼ cup fresh orange zest
- 1 teaspoon fresh lemon zest
- ¼ cup lukewarm water
- Line a cookie sheet with sides with aluminum foil.
- In a saucepan combine the water, orange juice, sugar and corn syrup. Heat over medium flame and stir to make sure the sugar dissolves. Cook, stirring occasionally, until mixture reaches 240°F.
- Immediately remove the mixture from the heat and add the zests and nuts. Mix to combine.
- With a slotted spoon remove the nuts from the syrup and place them on lightly greased cookie sheet (you can also use parchment paper). Make sure the nuts don’t touch.
- Cool completely and store in an airtight container.
My files, source unknown
© Eileen Goltz nuts 15a
The words of this author reflect his/her own opinions and do not necessarily represent the official position of the Orthodox Union.