Monday, December 7, 2009

Salted Cocoa-Roasted Nuts

If you are looking for a fun and festive addition to your holiday gift baskets, look no further!  If you are looking for something to munch on while you cook, bake, or decorate, look no further!  If you are looking for something to eat for no reason....look no further!  These are insanely addictive.  And seriously yummy.  Its no secret that I'm a big fan of the sweet/salty combo, and these nuts are exactly that.  The coating is egg whites, and it keeps the nuts feeling kind of light and fluffy.  I used a combination of hazelnuts, pecans, and walnuts, but I think next time I'll just use hazelnuts and pecans.  They were my favorite, anyway.  Next time I might add a bit of cinnamon to give them even more flavor!

These babies are getting packaged up as part of my holiday gift baskets.  I'm also going to have several bags ready to go for all the parties we will be attending in the next few weeks.  They'd make great hostess gifts.  Or great to give to last minute visitors that stop by. 

Salted Cocoa-Roasted Nuts
from Joy the Baker, adapted from Essence of Chocolate
  • 3 cups mixed nuts (I suggest hazelnuts and pecans)
  • 8 Tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into chunks
  • 2 large egg whites
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
Preheat oven to 325.  Spread nuts in a single layer on a baking sheet, and bake for 10 minutes, or until slightly browned and fragrant.  Transfer to a large bowl and allow to cool.

Scatter the chunks of butter on the baking sheet, and return to oven to melt the butter.  This will only take a few minutes, so keep a close eye on it.  Remove from oven and tilt the pan to spread the butter all over.

Meanwhile, beat the egg whites in the bowl of a stand mixer over medium-low/medium speed.  When the egg whites are just starting to hold their shape, add the sugar and increase the speed to medium-high for 2 minutes.  They will be shiny and sticky, and a little thinner than meringues. 

Sift the cocoa over the egg whites, and fold in. Mix the egg white mixture into the nuts, and spread onto the baking sheet. 

Bake for 10 minutes, then gently stir.  Return the nuts to the oven and bake another 10 minutes.  Stir again, and sprinkle the salt over the nuts.  Return for another 10 minutes, then remove.  Give the nuts one final stir, breaking up chunks as you go.  When done, the coating should be crisp, and the butter absorbed by the nuts. 

Allow to cool completely.  They can be stored in an airtight container up to 1 week.


Unknown said...

Those look delicious! I'll be making those soon. Thanks!

Erin said...

We've got some Christmas events coming up soon and I am totally making this! It looks delicious!

Karine said...

Your nuts looks delicious! Thanks for sharing :)

oneordinaryday said...

What a great snack. They sound perfectly delicious.

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