Wednesday, December 05, 2007

spicy 'n sweet maple-y nuts




Just popping in for a quick post- I can never bear to let the blog sit idle for long! Here is a recipe for some spicy and sweet nuts. I made these for the first time for our Halloween party, and they were so good they've become a favorite around here. This is a perfect dish for this time of year, when everyone can use a quick, easy, and healthy snacky food for parties and get-togethers, plus now is a great time to stock up on nuts in their shells since most stores carry them in time for the holidays.

I got the inspiration for this recipe here at 28 cooks, but made quite a few changes. The combination of mapley sweetness and spice is perfect, and the nuts become really crunchy and caramelized. Oh and bonus- nuts are great brain food, perfect for studying for those final exams and powering through those term papers! Just sayin'...

spicy 'n sweet maple-y nuts
  • 2 c raw nuts (I used a mixture of walnuts, almonds, cashews, and hazelnuts, but mix it up according to your favorites!)
  • 1/4 c brown sugar
  • 1/4 c maple sugar
  • 1-2 tsp. agave nectar, as necessary (optional)
  • 1/4 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon or pumpkin pie spice
  • pinch of pepper and/or cayenne pepper

In large pan, combine walnuts and sugar over medium high heat. I used my cast-iron pan for this. Stir frequently until sugar starts to melt. At first, it doesn't appear that the maple sugar is melting, but give it time. You might want to add a little bit of agave nectar at this point to help the melting process along. Lower heat, and stir continuously for 4-6 minutes, or until sugar starts to fully melt and cover nuts. Add spices and continue to cook for an additional minute or two, until nuts are well glazed and seasonings are well mixed in. Be careful not to burn- if you're using cast-iron, it will continue to be hot for a few minutes after you lower or turn off your heat, so calculate accordingly. Pour onto sheet of wax paper on a cooling rack, and spread out. Allow to cool. Store in tightly-sealed container.

Enjoy!


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26 comments:

Celine said...

I want your nuts, B.

theONLYtania said...

Mm I bet those are a great party food or holiday gift hmm? I burned nuts the other week when I was toasting them for the Smlove Pie :-P

VeggieGirl said...

spicy + sweet + maple + nuts = one extremely happy VeggieGirl :0)

Ashasarala said...

I was gonna do the whole popcorn thing, but I think I might snag this idea instead! Thanks!

village mama said...

Yum!!!!!!!What kind of lock system should I use? If I don't use restraint these won't make it to the wax paper ;-)

Rural Vegan said...

I apologize in advance:
I bet your nuts smell delicious!

Vegan_Noodle said...

Oh I love spiced nuts!! Perfect to munch on during the holidays...

BitterSweet said...

Oh perfect! We're having a little party for my literature class on Monday and now I know just what snack to bring. Thanks! :)

Melody Polakow said...

those look awesome!

Melisser; the Urban Housewife said...

This sounds awesome! I'll try to make them for my vegan Holiday potluck next week! woo.

How long do you think they'll be good? Could I make them Sunday for Tuesday night?

Courtney said...

Hey Bazu--these look great! Quick question, though. I was going to give some sort of candied/flavored nuts as a gift this holiday, and I was wondering if these would store okay in a glass jar? Do they clump together or do they stay separate?

Thanks! I cannot wait to try them!

Courtney

textual bulldog said...

Ooh, these look awesome! Gotta go candy some nuts, immediately.

urban vegan said...

You'd have to be nuts not to love this recipe. My only problem is that once I start munching, there is no stopping me.

bazu said...

Thanks for your comments, guys! I love the idea of giving candied nuts as gifts.

Melisser and Courtney, these do keep pretty well for a few days, but they aren't as crisp as the first day. I'd recommend re-heating them quickly (2-4 minutes) in an oven or toaster oven, or hinting to your gift recipient to do so, to get the full crunchy effect. The flavor stays good the whole time, though.

vko said...

oh- yum yum yum- love that spicy sweet salty wrapped up in a good for you package!

the pleasantly plump vegan said...

oh my, this sounds so good. i WILL be making these ASAP.

Liz² said...

sweet nuts! (sweet in all senses!)

Fiber said...

Now these sound delicious. I love what you've done with them!

SaraJane said...

Those look insanely good. I think I might try making them with a bit of cayenne just to punch them up a bit. I'm such a sucker for this kind of thing.

Pink Theory said...

wow! this is great that you posted this b/c it looks tasty and strangely enough, I was just thinking about making homemade glazed nuts but didn't have a recipe...now I have something to go from so thanks!!

Courtney said...

Thanks Bazu!

Courtney

the pleasantly plump vegan said...

i made these. they rocked

Veg*Triathlete said...

Hee, hee. Some of these comments made me giggle and now I can't come up with anything to say about the nuts that doesn't sound dirty...

Kumudha said...

I love nuts. Thanks for the recipe.

dreamy said...

sweet and spicy nuts, that's very unique!

Carrie™ said...

Thank you for the recipe. I love nuts and maple, so this combination sounds heavenly!