Spiced Nuts

Coming up with a good hostess gift isn’t always so easy.  Sure everyone loves a bottle of wine but some occasions or some hosts really demand more effort.  I like to mix homemade things with store-bought things so going to parties doesn’t turn into a chore.  Spiced nuts are the perfect thing for this as they are super quick to make, as well as a perfect accompaniment to that bottle you lug along.  Best of all the host can whip them out and toss them in a bowl if they run low on supplies or keep them for themselves later.  The key to making a homemade gift like this special, is the wrapping.  They taste just as good from a ziplog baggie but something about a nice cellophane bag and a pretty bow really elevates them.  I have lots and lots (and lots) of different ribbon on hand – I suggest checking out the dollar section at your local craft store or Target and picking up colorful ribbon when it’s super on sale.  As for the bags, ones like these are perfect to have on hand.

These nuts are adapted from the Union Square Cafe, an amazing spot in NYC where Patrick and I had an unbelievable meal.  It’s eponymous cookbook has tons of amazing recipes so you can recreate their meals at home, including their addictive bar nuts.  My friend Ali requests these at every party I have and I always make extra for her to bring home.  I actually just made these for her housewarming party and since today is her birthday I thought it was the right time to post them.  Congrats on the new house Ali and happy birthday!!

Spiced Nuts

  • 2 cups of unsalted mixed nuts (I like cashews, pecans, and walnuts but use whatever you want or have)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons melted butter
  • 2 tablespoons chopped rosemary
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne
  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Toast nuts on a cookie sheet for 10 minutes, then mix them with the melted butter in a large bowl.  Add the spices and toss.  You can make these ahead of time but not too much – I would say 24 hours.  Eventually the butter makes the nuts a little smooshy and the spices don’t have the same pep.

1 Comment

  1. Pingback: Holiday Bark | A Capitol Contessa

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