Monday, November 14, 2011

It's the most wonderful time of the year...

I often say that my birthday (Nov. 7th) kicks off the Holiday season.

Every year for my birthday I receive new Christmas music. Two years ago was a "Christmas by Sinatra" CD, last year was "Elvis' Christmas Album" on vinyl, and this year was "A Very She & Him Christmas" on iTunes.

Since the City of Austin has decorated downtown and I have a new Christmas album, spiced nuts are naturally the next step in paying tribute to the most wonderful time of the year.

In words best sung by Nat King Cole: "Chestnuts roasting on an open fire, Jack Frost nipping at your nose...", lets roast some nuts, y'all.

Pumpkin Pie Spiced Almonds (slightly altered from Better Homes and Gardens.)

1 egg white, slightly beaten
1 tsp water
2 cups raw almonds
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1/2 tsp salt

Preheat oven to 350 and bake almonds (spread in one layer throughout the pan) for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool.

Lower oven temperature to 325. Whisk egg white and water until frothy. Stir in remaining sugar, spice & salt. Mix in almonds until covered completely.

Bake 20 minutes, stirring once halfway through.

Move almonds from the baking sheet to parchment paper to cool. Place in a festive bowl, or bag up as gifts.

On top of the fact that these almonds are easy and so tasty, they will make any house smell like pure Holiday cheer.

Happy (almost) Holidays!

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