So the Thanksgiving weekend was a busy one, as I’m sure it was for you as well. People are extra nice and tend to open their houses to their friend’s and family. When I was younger I would show up at the festivities with a grin on my face, happy to be a part of things but lacking an iota of understanding as to what entertaining involves.
I’ve hosted enough to realize that even small events are BIG DEALS to the person running the show. Not to say I learned my lesson but essentially I did (along with most over-22-year-olds out there); profuse verbal thanks isn’t enough anymore and if you invite me to your party and open the front door you’ll find me with my hands full of food. Now it’s nice to add to the buffet but I like to give something to the host or hostess for later when it’s just them – a bottle of wine when I don’t have the time but when I do, I can’t think of anything that tops a nut mix. It lasts for a week, is fairly healthy, and is made of expensive ingredients to show your appreciation.
I made this mix for Thanksgiving weekend and since the bags were pre-filled and tied, I found it was one less thing to worry about as I frantically combed my daughter’s hair while she swatted me with her tiny fists and ran away like I had a taser instead of a brush.
The last thing I’ll say is that most nut mixes get the spices to stick with lots of butter or oil – not the case here. Just 1 egg white. So yes, aside from the bit of sugar this is a wonderfully healthy mix. Try it with honey or maple syrup and let me know how that goes!
Cinnamon Salty Sugar Nut Mix – The Perfect Hostess Gift
Makes about 7 cups
2 c. unsalted peanuts
2 c. raw unsalted almonds
1 1/2 c. mini pretzels, a bit broken
1 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
6 tbsp. sugar
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ginger
1/2 tsp. allspice
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1 egg white
1/2 c. unsweetened coconut, optional1/2 c. dried cranberries or cherries
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line a rimmed baking sheet with foil or parchment paper.
2. Mix peanuts, almonds and pretzels in a large mixing bowl. Whisk egg white in smaller bowl until bubbly and in a second small bowl, whisk salt, sugar and spices.
3. Add egg white and spice mixture to nut/pretzel mixture and stir to combine.
4. Spread on baking sheet with bake for 15 minutes.
5. If using coconut, remove baking sheet from oven and sprinkle over mixture. Stir gently and return to oven for another five minutes. If not using coconut, stir and continue to bake for another 5 minutes.
6. Remove pan from oven and sprinkle dried fruit across the surface. Let cool completely and break gently with hands. Store in airtight container up to 1 week.