Monday, March 28, 2011

Spicing Things Up

Baby steps.  I have got to take baby steps if I am going to tackle this nest and it's colossal mess.  I am stunned by amount of havoc my brood has managed to create.  So, rather than be paralyzed by the enormity of my task, I decided to take on an easy job today.  I decided to organize my spices.  I was amazed at all that I have amassed.  There's the ol' standbys like salt, pepper and garlic powder.  There's the thyme the Greek oregano.  There's the huge can of Hungarian paprika I bought 'cuz I thought the container would look sweet in my kitchen (I'm silly that way sometimes ... hey we all have our quirks, right?) And then there was this ... 

Now I know what you're thinking, cinnamon is cinnamon, but au contraire my friend.  You have not had cinnamon until you try this.  It puts the yum in yummy, let me tell ya.  It's not cheap and it was a bit tough to find in our neck of the woods, but it is soooo worth it. Trust me on this.

I got a little distracted and I couldn't stay on task once I got a whiff of this stuff...oops!  I made a little sweet treat for my brood.  I have an old recipe for candied nuts and ... they make the whole house smell soooooooo good when they are cooking in the oven.  Mmmmm!  I really love the fact that as far as recipes go, this one is pretty easy peasy.  I wish I could give credit to whoever I got it from. If it was you, you rock!  If not, give 'em a try ... your family will say you rock.  Just don't tell 'em how easy they were to make.  Your secret's safe with me.  Oh, and just a side note.  We here on the farm like them just as much (some of us even better) when they have had a chance to cool. 

Candied Nuts

Here's what you need:

1 lb. pecans
I used half walnuts and half pecans today 'cuz that's what I had and they turned out just fine.

1  egg white

3/4 sugar
my recipe calls for the white stuff, but one of these days I'm tempted to try a little brown sugar to see what that does 

1 teaspoon salt
your everyday run of the mill table salt is all you need here

1 teaspoon Saigon cinnamon
this is where the Saigon Cinnamon makes a world of difference, but if you gotta plain ol' cinnamon will do in a pinch

Here's what you do:

First of  all, preheat your oven to 250 degrees.  You'll want to line a cookie sheet (preferrably one with sides on it) with aluminum foil.  This stuff gets sticky and hard and I'd hate for you to ruin your pan and curse me out at the end of all this:) 

Next you need to mix the sugar, salt and Saigon cinnamon in a small bowl and just set it aside for just a bit.

Put the egg white into a big ol' bowl and mix it up until it's good and frothy.  I'd say maybe like 30 seconds with a wire whisk or a fork will just about do it.  Pour in your nuts and toss it all around with a spoon until they are all good and coated with egg white.

Pour about half of the sugar mixture on the nuts and stir 'em up good.  Add the rest of the sugar mixture and mix again.

Pour everything onto your foil-lined cookie sheet and try to spread it all out into a single layer.  Pop it into the oven for an hour, being sure to take it out and stir 'em up good every 20 minutes or so. 

When they are done, I like to pour them out onto some parchment paper to cool.  It's best to get them off the cookie sheet a.s.a.p. or they'll stick.



Jill said...

Are there any left? I can be there in about 2 hours!

Pamela said...

The brood ate 'em all right up, but just say the word and I'll put a batch in the oven for ya!