Spiced Nuts With Rum Glaze

These nuts are so addicting. I usually make them at Christmas (they make great little gifts around the holidays) but I decided to make them this week to snack on and for topping salads. I love them in an Arugula salad: Toss some arugula, sliced red pears, and good gorgonzola cheese with quality balsamic vinegar and extra-virgin olive oil. Top with spiced almonds. Delicious.

adapted from: The New Best Recipe
makes: 2 cups

2 cups raw almonds (or pecans halves or walnuts)

Spice Mix
2 tablespoons sugar
¾ teaspoon kosher salt

½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
1/8 teaspoon ground allspice

Rum Glaze
1 tablespoon dark rum
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon brown sugar
1 tablespoon unsalted butter.

Adjust an oven rack to the middle position and preheat to 350 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper and spread the nuts on it in an even layer. Toast for 4 minutes, then shake and rotate the pan and continue to toast until fragrant and the color deepens slightly, about 4 minutes longer. Transfer the baking sheet to a wire rack.

For the spice mix: Stir together sugar, salt, and spices in a medium bowl and set aside.

For the glaze: Bring the rum, vanilla, brown sugar, and butter to a boil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, whisking constantly. Stir in the toasted nuts and cook, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until the nuts are shiny and almost all the liquid has evaporated, about 1 ½ minutes.

Transfer the glazed nuts to the bowl with the spice mix; toss well to coat. Return the glazed and spiced nuts to the parchment-lined baking sheet to cool.

The nuts can be stored in an airtight container for up to 5 days.

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