Bar nuts

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The ultimate homemade snack!

I first saw these being made in a restaurant we were having lunch at in Elounda on Crete – the restaurant owner had commandeered one of the kitchen ovens and was roasting off his almonds to serve to his customers with drinks.

These nuts are great to make at home, especially if you are having a dinner party.  All you need are the almonds, salt and water!  Be careful, if you start eating these too early there will be none left for your guests.

Yes, you can buy salted almonds at the supermarket but you have no control over the type or amount of salt used to make them and if you can find really high-quality almonds the end result will be far better than anything you can buy.  Once made, put them in a jar with a tight-fitting lid and they will keep for a couple of weeks.

Try playing with flavours as well – you can make spicy flavours by adding chilli powder, cumin, turmeric or paprika to the brine along with the salt. Remember, if these are too salty you can reduce the salt.

Once you have been roasting for 30 minutes taste an almond.  If it is still very soft, put them back in the oven and check again in 5 minutes.  Check again and if they need another few minutes put them back in.  You are looking for a firmish texture but the nuts should not be browned on the inside.  They will firm up once cooled.

Ingredients:

  • 300g almonds, whole, skin on
  • 7.5g sea salt
  • 45ml hot water
The raw ingredients

Instructions:

  1. Set the oven to 150C and preheat.
  2. Measure out the salt.
  3. Pour almonds into a large bowl.
  4. Boil water and add to the salt, make sure to dissolve the salt fully to make a brine.
  5. Pour over the nuts and mix well, the nuts should all be wet.
  6. Pour nuts onto a baking tray, lined with baking parchment, in a single layer; make sure you add all the brine.  Place in oven and roast for 30 – 40 minutes.
  7. Every 10 minutes give the nuts a good mix.
  8. Once they have been baking for 30 minutes check the texture – they may need a further few minutes. When ready the nuts should be dry, salty and white in the middle – if they are brown they have been overdone.
  9. Cool and transfer to an airtight, glass jar.
The nuts are ready for the oven. Note, all the brine is poured in with the nuts.
Finished – nuts are dry and the salt has crystallised.
Nuts should remain pale inside.

Tips:

  • If you do overcook the nuts don’t worry, they are still good to eat – just don’t tell anyone!
  • You can add flavours to the brine – try some chilli powder to spice things up.
  • I use Malden sea salt but please use your own favourite, avoid using table salt.

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