Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Spicy Mexican Glazed Nuts

Oooh...these unassuming little nuggets are...whew!...spicy 
and oh so addicting.

if you want a quick spicy sweet nut recipe, this is a great one.  they turn out really crunchy, slightly glazed and you don't have to do anything on the stove with molten sugar or syrups...a simple egg white along with your spices and a little sugar... in the oven, and the magic spicy glazed coating happens without fail.  these were such a hit with my spice lovin' friends.  i tend to make things a bit spicier than most can handle, and these were just right.  i must say...i used REAL MEXICAN CHILI POWDER.  not the wimpy stuff you buy at a regular market so mine came out extra spicy...AND i used the cayenne.  i suggest you use your judgement on the spices, but if you have a Mexican market near you do yourself a favor and buy the real stuff.  it's cheap and always adds a nice blend of spicy chilies to what ever you're making.

adapted from Big World-Small Kitchen and Epicurious

3 cups raw mixed nuts
(i used almonds, pecans, macadamia and walnut)
1/3 cup sugar
1 egg white beaten until white and fluffy
1 Tbsp chili powder
(i used REAL Mexican chili powder...whew!...spicy!)
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 - 3/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper

preheat oven to 350 F...place rack in the middle

spray baking sheet with non stick spray.  in a small bowl combine sugar and spices.  in a large bowl whisk egg until white and frothy.  add nuts into egg white then add the sugar/spice mixture and stir until everything looks evenly coated

spread nuts evenly onto prepared baking sheet and bake until golden, about 20 minutes.

TIP... i took them out after 15-20 minutes and stirred and separated the nuts...then returned to the oven for approx. 10-15 more minutes.  keep your eye on them.  i think this second baking time helps to keep them crunchy.

TIP... do not store them until they are completely cooled, but do not wait over night to store them.  if they get a little sticky (they shouldn't because of the second bake) you can stick them back in the oven for a few minutes, let them cool, then store again.

TIP... store in a clip top glass jar with a rubber seal

TIP... also i saved some of those little stay-fresh packets you find at the bottom of other snack foods....you know that annoying little plastic pouch that says DO NOT EAT...DO NOT OPEN.  they look like sugar packets...i put one of those in the bottom of the jar if i have one available.  don't know if it does anything, but i made some nuts 2 weeks ago that are still good and crunchy.

trust me these won't last that long...you'll eat them all up, but i made a sweet glazed version for Dad and he doesn't eat them as quickly as i do


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