nuts for new year

30 December 2010

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Make a batch of these to accompany your champagne tomorrow night – and then resist the urge to scoff them all before the clock strikes twelve…

It’s worth bumping up the quantities if you have a few guests joining you; the cayenne-maple syrup combo makes them incredibly moreish and they are sure to disappear in a flash.

Spicy-Sweet Glazed Pretzel & Nut Mix, adapted from David Lebovitz

2 cups (200g) mixed raw (unroasted, unsalted) nuts – a combination of cashews, whole almonds, peanuts, pecan halves and hazelnuts works well, but use whatever you fancy
1 tablespoon (15g) unsalted butter
3 tablespoons (45g) dark brown sugar
0.5 teaspoon ground cinnamon
0.75 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1.5 tablespoons maple syrup
1 teaspoon coarse salt (such as flaky sea salt or kosher salt)
2 cups (100g) small pretzel twists

Preheat oven to 180ºC.

Spread the nuts on a baking tray and roast for 10 minutes, stirring once to ensure even toasting.

Melt the butter then combine it in a large bowl with the sugar, cinnamon, cayenne pepper and maple syrup. Add the warm nuts and stir well.

Then add the salt and pretzels and stir again until everything is coated.

Spread the mixture back on the baking tray and return it to the oven for 10-12 minutes, stirring a couple of times during cooking. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely on the tray, separating the nuts and pretzels as they cool.

Once cool, the mixture can be stored in an airtight container for up to a week.

HAPPY NEW YEAR!! I hope 2011 is your best year yet.

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