Spiced Candied Walnuts Recipe
Fancy Nut Recipes
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Spiced Candied Walnuts

Peanut or canola oil
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
4 cups walnut halves
1 cup confectioners' sugar, sifted

In a deep saucepan, pour oil to a depth of at least 3 inches and heat to 350 degrees F. While the oil is heating, bring a large pot of water to a boil. Measure the salt, cinnamon, cayenne pepper and black pepper into a small bowl and mix well. Holding the nuts in a sieve, dip them briefly into the boiling water, about 1 minute for large halves. Transfer to a large bowl with a little water clinging to them. (Blanching removes some of the tannins and makes walnuts taste sweet.) While the nuts are still hot and wet, add the sugar and toss well to evenly coat. The sugar will melt on contact with the hot nuts. Keep stirring and tossing until all the sugar has melted. If bits of unmelted sugar remain on the nuts, they will not fry properly.

Stir the nuts again before frying. Using a large slotted spoon, transfer a few nuts to the hot oil, allowing the foam to subside before adding another spoonful. (Otherwise, the oil could foam over and burn you.) Fry in small batches until the nuts are medium brown, about 1 minute. Be careful not to overcook. Scatter on an unlined baking sheet to cool slightly.

While the nuts are still warm, transfer them to a bowl and sprinkle evenly with about half of the spice mix. Toss well to distribute the spices and then taste a nut. Add more spice mix, to taste, and toss well after each addition. When cool, pack in an airtight jar. They will keep at room temperature for at least 2 weeks.

YIELD: 4 Cups


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