The thing about candied nuts is that they offer an "upgrade" to any dish you are serving. A salad becomes just that much better with a sprinkle of nuts and some dried fruit over the top. And ditto with just about anything else!
Speaking for myself, a dish of candied nuts set out for guests is the way to go. You will not be sorry you took a few minutes to make these candied nuts.
Salted Candied Nuts
adapted from Everybody likes Sandwiches.
3 c pecan or walnut halves
2 T butter
2 T real maple syrup
2 T brown sugar
optional 1/8 - 1/4 t cayenne pepper (this adds a delicious twist of flavor)
sea salt in a grinder OR 1/4 t salt to the syrup mixture
Spread the nuts in a 9X13 pan, warm and toast at 300 degrees for 15 minutes.
Combine the remaining ingredients in a small saucepan, melt together and bring to a simmer on low heat.
Remove pan from oven and drizzle the syrup over nuts, stir to coat all sides.
Return to the oven for 10 minutes, stir and let bake an additional 10 minutes. Remove from oven and spread out on a wax paper covered tray.
If using salt in a grinder, salt the nuts while the syrup is still sticky. Let cool and enjoy.
Note: You can adjust the cayenne or not use it at all (try it, it is just the right amount!)
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