When I used to live in the same country as the people who I give Christmas presents to I would always make little hampers of homemade goodies for them. These crunchy, sweetly spiced nuts would always make an appearance and they are always very popular served with festive drinks.
Nuts seem to be traditional at Christmas (they’re not just for squirrels) and for my money these rank far higher than battling with a stubborn walnut and a nutcracker.
They’re very quick to prepare and keep very well so can be prepared well ahead of time, always a bonus during the Christmas season when there always seems to be infinitely more to do than can possibly be crammed into the day.
1 egg white
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground allspice
1/4 tsp sea salt
pinch ground cloves
pinch ground coriander
400g mixed nuts (I used peanuts, cashews, almonds and pecans)
Pre-heat the oven to 140°c.
Whisk the egg white until fluffy. Add the sugar and seasonings and continue to whisk until the sugar has dissolved. Stir through the nuts, ensuring that they are well coated . Spread them out onto a large, greased baking sheet and bake for about 1 hour, turning occasionally to ensure that they brown evenly. Once the hour is up remove them from the oven and loosen them slightly but leave them to cool on the tray. They may feel a little soft at this stage but they will crisp us they cool and become crunchy.
Store in an airtight container.