Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Candied Nuts

This is a recipe that I always get requests for. It's so addictive my family can polish off a whole batch in just one weekend. Make the Costco-sized batch, you won't regret it.
So here goes, for these candied nuts you will need: sugar, water, cinnamon, vanilla, a pinch of salt, and nuts (I used almonds and pecans, but you can use whatever strikes your fancy)

You want to use a heavy bottomed pot to keep things from burning. Heat the water on medium high heat (around 7 on an electric stove) then add your sugar and salt

Next, the cinnamon

At first, the cinnamon will be hard to incorporate

Don't panic yet, it takes a minute...

It's starting to smell good in here! Soon it will start to boil up

 This is when you add the nuts

Have a cooking mitt nearby--the syrup will bubble up, pop, and burn you. My hand turned bright red, up past my wrist, before I had to suck it up and use a pot holder

Let the nuts simmer for a while, this allows the extra water to evaporate and it gives everything a nice toasty flavor. Stir continuously or it will get too toasty (aka, burnt). When it gets harder to stir and your spatula leaves a void as you scrape the bottom of the pot, then it is time to add the remaining sugar and vanilla. If it is too grainy you can add a couple tablespoons of water

Shut off the heat and  turn out onto a cookie sheet that has been lined with parchment paper

Shoo away your suddenly starving family, it's too hot to eat

After about 20 minutes, it will be cool enough to taste

 Yum! Break it up and pack it in some mason jars (or any airtight container)

I wrapped some in cellophane for my neighbors

In an airtight container it can keep for months--it usually never makes it past 3 days though. It makes a beautiful gift and holds up well in the mail. Just be careful who you give it to--they'll probably ask for more!

  • 1 cup Water, plus 2 Tbs as needed
  • 4 cups Sugar, Divided
  • 2 Tbs Cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 5 cups Raw Nuts 
  • 2 Tbs Vanilla Extract

  1.  Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper
  2.  Combine 1 cup water, 1/2 tsp salt, and 3 cups sugar in large pot on medium high heat  until simmering
  3. Add in 2 Tbs cinnamon and stir until combined 
  4. Add nuts and stir constantly to prevent burning, turn up the heat to high
  5. When water burns off and mixture is hard to stir, lower the heat to medium and add in 1 cup sugar and 2 Tbs vanilla
  6. Mix well until completely coated, if the mixture is too grainy you can add in 2 Tbs water
  7. Turn off heat and turn out onto cookie sheet
These end up tasting a bit like Boston baked beans. In the next few weeks I'll be sharing a similar recipe that uses egg whites instead of syrup. They are different but just as addictive, stay tuned!

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