Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Candy nuts & survival techniques.

Candy nuts

It's nearly time for holidays. Uni has so many holidays, I just don't know what to do with them all. I've started planning ways to spend my long, and sunny days and hopefully I'll get to do them all, rather than just hanging around and wasting my time, which is what I normally do. So I've made a list. Of things that I desperately want to do in my holidays, before the next uni semester starts and I start wishing that I'd done something fun over the summer.
  • Go to the beach. If it's warm enough, I might even get to go swimming (!)
  • Have a picnic. With a proper wicker basket and potato salad and champagne and big sun hats.
  • Have a barbecue. At the beach!
  • Go to the place where you can pick your own berries. I need to find out what that place is called...
  • Make jam. With the berries that I picked.
  • Make tomato relish.
  • Make lots of yummy christmasy things to give as presents.
  • Decorate the house all nice for christmas.
  • Spend time with friends. Thats an important one.
  • Go camping. For a couple of days, at least.
Before any of that can happen, I have to get through my final three days of study. Having snacks is a good way to get you through.
I looked at lots of recipes for candy nuts before I made these. I ended up using two recipes, from David Lebovitz and Everybody Likes Sandwiches. The nuts were meant to be sweet and salty and spicy all at once, but because I never properly measure spices out (seriously, who does that?) mine were just sweet, with a big salt hit every now and then. I'm not complaining though. They're still good. I took these to work and they were gone in an hour. But next time I'll remember to put more spices in.

Adapted from Everybody Likes Sandwiches and David Lebovitz

1 cup salted peanuts
1 cup raw almonds
1 cup sugar (I used mostly white with a bit of brown thrown in for good luck)
1/3 cup water
sprinkle of course sea salt, cinammon, paprika and cayenne pepper.

In a big pot, mix the nuts, sugar and water. Heat over medium heat and stir frequently. After a while, the nuts are supposed to get sandy with the crystalised sugar (mine didn't, I just had heaps of syrup, which didn't go away).
Keep stirring until the nuts and syrup start to get golden/bronze. (It should take you roughly 20 mins to get to this stage).
Take off the heat, and scrape the nuts onto a tray lined with baking paper.
Leave to cool and then break up the nuts and try not to eat them all at once!

p.s. if you'd like better instructions than mine, I'd recommend going to David Lebovitz, he's got pictures for each stage of the process.

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