Friday, December 24, 2010

Oh Nuts, It's Almost Christmas!

Submitted by Michelle
3 ingredients. Count em', two, three! Almonds, honey and Chinese Five-Spice Powder is all it takes to make a delicious savory treat just in time for Christmas. My friend Martha Stewart gave me this recipe, and though most things she makes can often be very labor intensive, I will say that she has done it right with this magical mixture.
All one has to do is heat the honey in a saucepan until it is thin and easy to pour, add the Chinese Five-Spice Powder and mix well. Add in the almonds and stir quickly before the honey starts hardening and your nuts become one big ball.
Spread the nuts on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or the eco-friendly Silpat mat, and bake at a low temp for a little less than an hour. You will know your nuts are done when they turn a golden brown and you can smell them roasting.
When the nuts come out of the oven I spread them on parchment to cool and try to resist the urge to taste them right away so I don't burn my tongue (though it has been known to happen in the past.) Once cooled, they will last about 1 week in an airtight container but I doubt you'll be able to stretch it out for that long.
The roasted almonds make a great holiday hostess gift wrapped up in a cello bag with some festive ribbon.

Honey Roasted Almonds
1 cup honey
2 teaspoons Chinese Five-Spice Powder
5 cups whole almonds, skin on

Heat oven to 300 degrees. Line 2 rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper. Warm the honey in a saucepan over medium heat until it becomes thin and easy to pour. Stir in the five-spice powder and then the almonds

Spread the mixture in a single layer onto the baking sheets. Bake, rotating the pans halfway through cooking, until the nut mixture had darkened in color, 45 to 55 minutes. Immediately spread the almonds in a single layer on parchment paper. Set aside to cool.

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