Thursday, December 1, 2011

Busy Cooking: Spiced Pecans

I had never had spiced nuts until about 6 years ago.  We had a Christmas party before we moved to Japan, and one of our friends brought them over.  They were so delicious and addicting, I couldn't stop eating them.  I got the recipe from her and tucked it away, never to attempt to make them on my own.

This Thanksgiving, my brother, who likes nuts, was coming to visit.  I wanted to make these nuts because I knew that he would really like them.  I couldn't find my friend's recipe, so I resorted to my trusty America's Test Kitchen TV Show Cookbook for a spiced pecan recipe.  Their recipe called for Bourbon, I didn't have any and even if I did, I don't really like rum, so I left it out.  These nuts were soooo delicious and easy to make, and with the 2 tsp vanilla in the glaze, they smelled great too.  I made them four days before Thanksgiving, I had to hide them so Hazel and I wouldn't eat them all.  They stayed fresh and crisp right up until the day after Thanksgiving, when I polished them off.

If you're going to a party this month or anytime really and need something simple, quick, and sure to be a hit, try these!  In total, they took ten minutes to make.  We liked them so much, I have 2.5 lbs in the freezer waiting to be glazed!

Spiced Pecans:

Oven:  350'

2 cups pecan halves

Spice mix:
2 TBSP sugar
3/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp ground cloves
1/8 tsp allspice (I omitted because I didn't have any)

1 TBSP unsalted butter
2 tsp vanilla
1 tsp brown sugar

1) Preheat oven to 350', place pecans on baking sheet that is lined with parchment paper (for easier clean up) in an even layer.  Bake in oven for 8 minutes.

2) While pecans are in the oven, prepare the spice mix by mixing all the ingredients together in a large bowl, set aside.

3) Make the glaze- add all the ingredients to a medium pan and whisk constantly over medium-high heat until is reaches a boil.  Stir in the pecans and continue cooking until almost all the liquid has evaporated, about 1-2 minutes.

4) Toss the glazed pecans into the bowl with the spice mix.  Place spiced pecans back on baking sheet to cool before eating.  Store in an airtight container- 5-7 days.

1 comment: