January 30, 2013

Soup to Nuts: Go nuts!

The overexposure of Psy (sigh) continues with his upcoming Super Bowl commercial, but when it comes to Super Sunday snacking options, he has a point.

By Meredith Goad mgoad@pressherald.com
Staff Writer

(Continued from page 1)

click image to enlarge

click image to enlarge

David Ross, the chef/owner of 50 Local in Kennebunk, serves these masala and chili spiced peanuts on the cheese plate at his restaurant.

MASALA AND CHILI SPICED PEANUTS

Makes 2 pounds.

2 pounds peanuts, raw blanched

Salt

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

Heat oven to 350 degrees.

Toss the peanuts in olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Place them on a baking sheet and bake them for 5 minutes. The peanuts should be light brown in color. If they are too light, leave them in the oven and check every minute until light brown.

Cool on tray.

MASALA SPICE:

Whole spices:

2 tablespoons coriander seed

2 tablespoons cumin seed

4 cardomom pods

1 tablespoon fennel seeds

1 tablespoon mustard seeds

4 star anise

1 tablespoon turmeric

4 cloves

Add spices to a medium-sized saute pan and toast them on medium-high heat. As soon as the mustard seeds start to pop, take the pan off the heat. Transfer the spices to a plate to cool.

Transfer them when cool to a coffee grinder and grind very smooth.

Store in a sealable glass spice jar if you're not going to use that day.

CHILI POWDER:

2 New Mexico chilis

2 chipotle chilis

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Place chilis on a baking sheet and bake them for 3 to 5 minutes, or until the chilis start to puff out or just turn brown. With tongs or spoon, take them off the pan and cool on a plate. When cool, break them apart with your hands, seeds and all, into the coffee grinder and grind to a smooth powder. Store in a sealable glass spice jar.

TO MAKE THE NUTS:

1/4 cup sugar

1/4 cup water

Salt

In a large saute pan over medium-high heat, add the sugar and water and boil. Stir with a wooden spoon to make a simple syrup.

When sugar is melted, add the nuts, spice and chili powder.

The nuts should get sticky. Keep cooking them until the pan is dry.

Sprinkle them with salt. Turn the heat down and stir and cook for another minute, getting them stickier.

Place them on a sheet tray and spread them out to cool.

When the nuts are cool, they should stick together in clumps and be crunchy. Store in a sealable container.



 

PECANS

Pecans are chock full of antioxidants, even more so than walnuts and almonds. A 1-ounce serving (about 20 pecan halves) has 196 calories and more than 19 vitamins and minerals, including vitamin A, vitamin E, vitamin B-1, calcium, thiamin, magnesium, potassium and zinc. Pecans are also a good source of oleic acid, the same type of fatty acid found in olive oil.

BUTTERED PECAN POPCORN

From National Pecan Shellers Association

8 cups popped popcorn (about 1/3 to 1/2 cup unpopped)

Nonstick cooking spray

1/2 cup pecan pieces

2 tablespoons butter or margarine

1/3 cup light corn syrup

1/4 cup instant butter pecan pudding mix (dry)

1/4 teaspoon vanilla

Preheat oven to 300 degrees. After popping, discard unpopped popcorn kernels. Spray a 17- by 13- by 2-inch roasting pan with nonstick cooking spray. Place the popped corn and pecans in the pan. In a separate pan, heat butter and corn syrup, then stir in pudding mix and vanilla. Pour mixture over popcorn. Bake in oven at 300 degrees for 16 minutes, stirring halfway through baking. Remove pan from oven and turn mixture onto a large piece of foil. Cool popcorn completely. When cool, break into large pieces and serve.

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