Who doesn’t love a bargain?! Twofer, BOGO (buy one, get one free) – such a deal.
I make no secret of the fact that I am quite fond of making my money stretch (yes, I’m cheap!). That’s one of the reasons I like to make things from scratch. Every time you buy a convenience food (shredded cheese, bagged lettuce, jarred spaghetti sauce), there’s a price to pay.
Along this same line, I’m ecstatic (Yes, ecstatic – I’m an actress. I’m overly dramatic!) when a food I make can be used more than once – and I’m not talking leftovers. I mean you make a dish, change it up a bit, and voilà – a brand new dish.
I would now like to introduce to you my Spicy Walnuts recipe. When you use walnut halves you have a snack food to set out in a bowl at parties or to chomp on watching TV. When you chop the halves into 4 or 5 pieces, you have a tasty add-in to salads and casseroles.
As the name implies (SPICY Walnuts), they have a kick to them. If it’s too much for you, ease off on the cayenne pepper. Also, since this is a vegetarian blog, I’m recommending vegetarian Worcestershire sauce – there are several brands. Spicy Walnuts are easy to make, but they do take about 20 minutes to bake.
NOTE: You aren’t obligated to use walnuts. Try almonds, peanuts, cashews – whatever you fancy!
For you visual learners (or those just curious to see me in action), click on SPICY WALNUTS and I’ll show you how to make them.
- ¾ pound walnuts, halves or broken into large pieces (break them by hand rather than chopping to prevent unusable bits)
- 3 T butter
- 3 T vegetarian Worcestershire sauce
- ¾ tsp salt
- ½ tsp ground cinnamon
- ¼ tsp garlic powder
- ¼ tsp cayenne pepper (also called red pepper spice)
- about 4 drops Tabasco sauce (shake bottle well)
Heat oven to 350º Fahrenheit.
In skillet or saucepan, melt butter. Add in Worcestershire sauce, salt, cinnamon, garlic powder, cayenne, and Tabasco. Stir over low heat to blend. Pour in walnuts and coat with sauce. Spread walnuts onto a jelly roll pan (a cookie sheet with 4 sides). If you use a regular cookie sheet, you’re more than likely going to have to retrieve fallen nuts from the oven bottom. Not fun!!! (Believe me!)
It takes a total of 16-25 minutes for the walnuts to brown, stirring every 5 minutes. Please heed this advice: set 2 timers! One for the total of 20 minutes, and one to set every 5 minutes. Five minutes is just enough time to find one ‘quick’ thing to do. Either this thing ends up taking longer than expected, OR we find another ‘quick’ thing to do and suddenly it’s 10 minutes later. I think you get my point. It’s important to stir them every 5 minutes so they brown evenly.
It’s worth noting, I use a dark jelly roll pan. Dark pans cook things faster, so my Spicy Walnuts took 17 minutes. That’s why I put a wide cooking range (16-25 minutes). The cooking time will vary depending on your oven and the type of baking pan you use. You want the nuts browned and crispy, but not blackened.
WARNING: These Spicy Walnuts are very addictive. Like the old Lays Potato Chip advert – I bet you can’t eat just one!