Sweet and Spicy Cashews

Spiced nuts – any kind of nut it doesn’t have to be cashews – are such a great addition to any holiday gathering.  They are great starter to have with cocktails before dinner or as an addition to a cheese plate.  I even like to serve them as part of a dessert course with port wine and port soaked cherries dipped in chocolate.  Or another idea is to include these great little homemade treats as part of a gift basket.  Just add some crackers (see yesterday’s post with the Gruyere and White Cheddar Crisps) and some dried fruit and chocolate and you have a wonderful gift box.
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Combine the honey, maple syrup, oil and spices in a medium bowl and combine with a whisk.  Add the nuts and toss to coat.

2. Place the nuts the nuts on the lined baking sheet in a single layer and scrape all the extra goodness from the bowl over the top.  It will settle to the bottom of the pan at first.  3. Roast for 7 minutes and then carefully mix the nuts with a rubber spatula; spooning some of the mixture back over the nuts.

4. Roast for 5 more minutes or until golden brown.  Remove from the oven and mix with the syrup spice mixture from the bottom of the pan again and add sea salt.  Cool on the parchment paper (not on the hot pan) on the counter or on a cooling rack.  Save the cooled candied bits to serve wit the nuts as a garnish.

Spiced Nuts

½ cup raw cashews

2 Tbsp honey

2 Tbsp maple syrup

¼ to ½ tsp cayenne pepper

2 Tbsp canola oil

½ tsp cinnamon

¼ tsp cardamom

¼ tsp cumin

½ tsp coriander

1 tsp sea salt, plus more for after cooking

½ teaspoon fresh ground black pepper

Yields approximately 1/2 cup
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