Smoked and salted nuts are the perfect pairing for a holiday cocktail. I adore almonds, but feel free to use walnuts, pecans, cashews or a combination for an easy, make-ahead appetizer. I've tried them all and they're addictive--so much that you may want to make an extra batch. This recipe is easily doubled and makes a sweet holiday gift, too.
Combine the almonds, tamari, oil, liquid smoke and salt, if using, in a mixing bowl until the almonds are completely moistened. Let sit for a few minutes while the oven preheats.
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F and line a sheet pan with a silicone liner or parchment paper.
Stir the almonds once again and then arrange them in a single layer on the sheet pan. Bake the almonds on the middle rack of the oven until the almonds are beginning to dry out, about 10-12 minutes.
Shake the pan to roll the almonds over and redistribute them into a single layer.
Raise the heat to 350 degrees F and bake until they smell toasted and are completely dry, 5-7 minutes more.
Transfer to a cooling rack. Cool completely before serving or storing.
Bottled liquid smoke may sound like some artificial flavoring, like MSG. But it's actually real smoke collected from water vapors condensed into a liquid. Since it's filtered of tar and ash, liquid smoke is actually less carcinogenic than actually smoking foods. A terrific shortcut for certain foods, like these nuts, it's best used with a light hand.
Copyright 2021 Lynne Curry