Some way or another — between my cousin’s contributions to Thanksgiving, a Sunday trip to the Hollywood farmer’s market, a particularly appealing Safeway sale, my own attempts to check the functionality of my grandmother’s smoke alarms and various other scenarios — I ended up eating an inordinate amount of candied nuts over break, which has left me with a ravenous, daily craving for more.
Luckily, candied nuts are easily in the realm of a college student’s cooking arsenal, with the cooking effort consisting primarily of stirring and baking. The perfect nut will be a balance of sweet, salty and, for the daring, some lingering heat.
Infinitely customizable, a big batch can take, at most, ten minutes to make, and will feed you for a full finals week.
1 egg white
1 tbs water
1 lb. of nuts (one variety or a mix)
½ cup of brown sugar
¼ tsp vanilla extract
¾ tsp salt
½ tsp cinnamon
Preheat the oven to 250 degrees, and grease/line with a baking sheet.
Whisk together the egg white and water until foamy and slightly opaque. Stir together the sugar, vanilla, salt and cinnamon in a separate bowl.
Add the nuts to the egg whites, coating evenly. Then toss the nuts in the sugar mixture. Spread them out evenly on the baking sheet.
Bake for an hour in the oven, stirring every 20 minutes.
Try modifying the flavors by replacing the cinnamon with other spices — Chinese five spice, espresso powder or chili powder, for instance.