There are obvious holiday staples, like mulled wine and pumpkin anything. But, a lesser acknowledged favorite of mine is spiced nuts. When I saw this recipe I had to try it. The salty/sweet/spicy combo was simply too enticing, and a nice twist on the usual. They turned out great, despite having gone seriously overboard on the salt, and I’m planning on making them again when I go home for Christmas. I have a feeling they’re going to go great with a glass of wine in front of the fire.
Maple Rosemary Glazed Cashews
6 tablespoons pure maple syrup, preferably grade B
4 tablespoons finely chopped fresh rosemary leaves
4 teaspoons packed golden brown sugar
1 tablespoon olive oil
½ teaspoon sharp paprika
1/4 ground cayenne pepper, use more if you like things spicy
1 pound raw whole cashews (unsalted, un-roasted)
1 tablespoon kosher or sea salt
Heat oven to 350 degrees. In a medium bowl, mix maple syrup, rosemary, brown sugar, oil, and spice until smooth. Add cashews and mix to coat thoroughly. Pour the nuts onto the baking sheet (I used the silicon sheets to prevent sticking) and sprinkle with the salt. Start with the two teaspoons. Add more only if needed. Bake for 18-20 minutes or just until you begin to smell them and they are golden brown. The nuts will crisp and harden as the cool.
Enjoy while beating your sister at Scrabble.