My favorite recipes to share on The Perfect Pantry come from readers. Special thanks for today's fabulous party dish go out to Katrina, who left me a note on Twitter about her recipe for ginger spice mixed nuts (my name for them) flavored with garam masala. The original recipe called for curry powder, but Katrina made it with garam masala, an Indian spice blend that's always in my pantry, and I love the subtle warmth it adds to these nuts. When I buy mixed nuts in the supermarket, they're always incredibly salty, so I started with unsalted mixed nuts (also found in the supermarket), and I added salt to the recipe (if you like your cocktail nuts salty, add an additional quarter teaspoon of salt). Also, I increased the amount of ground ginger, to my own taste. For all the sweetener, the nuts don't taste overly sweet; ginger and garam masala balance the sugar with a slightly peppery bite. My friend Bev, who made this recipe with me, proclaimed these nuts a winner, and she brought them to a party the next night. All gone.
Ginger spice mixed nuts
Makes 2 cups.
[What follows is Katrina's recipe; I've noted my adaptations.] Here's my nut recipe. The original called for curry powder, and I was out. I've made them both ways and I much prefer the ones with garam masala in them. Enjoy!
4 tsp olive oil
1 Tbsp powdered ginger (original calls for 1 tsp)
1 tsp garam masala
4 Tbsp sugar
2 Tbsp honey
1/2 tsp kosher salt (original calls for no salt)
2 cups unsalted mixed nuts (11.5 oz can)
Line a large platter or baking sheet with a piece of parchment paper, and set aside.
In a skillet (I used a nonstick pan), heat oil, ginger and garam masala over low heat until fragrant, 1-2 minutes. Stir in sugar, honey and salt, and mix well. Stir in nuts, and toss to coat.
Raise heat to low-medium, and cook until the sauce begins to caramelize, 2-5 minutes. If you have a light colored pan, the sauce should be amber; if it's a dark pan, you can't see easily, so go by consistency. You're aiming for an almost peanut brittle consistency.
Spread the nuts on the parchment to cool. They taste best after they've cooled, so you have to be patient. You'll be disappointed if you try them too soon. Good luck with this step!
Other recipes that use these pantry ingredients:
Spiced pecans, from Ezra Pound Cake
Crispy roasted chick peas (garbanzo beans) with Moroccan spices, from Kalyn's Kitchen
Roasted peanuts with garlic and ginger, from White on Rice Couple
Sweet and salty spiced nuts, from Food52
Indian spiced nuts, from 28 Cooks
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