May 26, 2008

Pimenton Spiced Walnuts

I've been looking at my over packed freezer pantry for awhile and thinking about trying to clean it out so containers of Tofutti don't attack us every time we open it. I stock all kinds of nuts in the freezer but all too often use them only in sweet preparations. I decided to make some spiced nuts and use up the remainder of a bag of walnut halves. After pondering several flavor combinations I settled on smoked paprika, thyme and lemon. My thyme plant was in desperate need of a haircut! Alex had to try these because he loves trying spicy things and then dramatically running for water. I think he actually liked the spice but doesn't care for walnuts so they weren't a hit with him. I thought they were wonderful so I'm taking them to a Memorial Day barbecue so I don't end up eating them all myself.

Pimenton Spiced Walnuts
Makes 2 cups
2 cups walnut halves
2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves
2 teaspoons lemon zest
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon smoked hot paprika (pimenton picante)
1 tablespoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
-Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
-Lay walnut halves in a single layer on a baking sheet. Bake in the oven for 8 minutes.
-While the walnuts are baking mix the remaining ingredients together in a large bowl.
-Remove the walnuts from the oven and toss in spice mixture while still hot. Spread the coated walnuts back onto the baking sheet in a single layer.
-Turn the oven to 300 degrees F and bake 3 minutes. Stir the nuts and bake for a final 3 minutes.
-Remove from the oven and cool.