Sunday, June 27, 2010

Crack Nuts

Aptly named by my boyfriend's dad, you can't eat just one. These little guys make a nice, sweet snack, or a great topping for ice cream, salads, etc... You can use whatever nuts you want, really, but I recommend walnuts, pecans, almonds, or a mixture of the three. Walnuts are usually my go to choice, but only because pecans are more expensive. ;-)

What you need:
*brown sugar
*vanilla extract (imitation will do if that's all you have)

To be honest, I'm not one to be strict about measuring ingredients, and these always turn out delicious. So you know, use your discretion based on the ingredients you have available to you.

Melt butter in a frying pan over medium heat. Not quite a Paula Dean amount of butter, but you want there to be enough to entirely and thickly coat the bottom of your frying pan. Carefully, add your vanilla-just a splash will do, as this stuff is generally strong, and the addition of alcoholic substances to hot pans can end badly if the heat is too high (read: you might catch something on fire). Next, add your nuts. Shake them around in the pan until they're completed coated with the vanilla butter mixture. Next, add a nice, heaping handful (Or cup. Whatever) of brown sugar (regular sugar will work too). Stir well, and remove from heat.

Spread your mock caramely nut mixture over a sheet of tin foil. Sprinkle liberally with salt, and just a dash of cinnamon, or if you have it, Penzey's Baking or Pumpkin Pie spice. It's strongly recommended you allow them to cool before consuming...unless you like hot nuts in your mouth (I know it sounds funny, but 2nd degree burns on your tongue are not as amusing as you'd think). Nuts should be toasty and candy like, and ultimately delicious.

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