Mmmmmmm … nibbles.  Whether you’re making something for folks coming over to watch the game (whatever game it may be), or putting something out for people to snack on during an open house party or you just want to have something tasty to snack on while watching a movie, having an easy “back-pocket” go-to recipe is key.  Something that’s easy to throw together and is a little different than the standard fare – that’s the order of the day.

I made this recipe with cashews, but it’ll work just as well with peanuts or almonds.  The most important thing is that you start with raw nuts, not ones that are already roasted and salted.

Spicy Cashews

  • 1 lb raw cashews
  • drizzle garlic-infused olive oil
  • 2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1-2 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 2 Tbsp dark brown sugar
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 5-6 sprigs thyme leaves
  • juice of 1-2 limes
  • fine sea salt

Preheat oven to 300 F.  Spread the cashews out in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet, then drizzle with the garlic oil, tossing well to make sure they’re covered, and roast for 30 minutes.  While they’re roasting away, toast the cumin seeds by heating them in a dry pan over high heat.  It should only take a minute or two until they’re nice and fragrant.  Once they’re done, pour them into a spice grinder or mortar and pestle with the coriander, brown sugar and chilli flakes and grind until fine.

When the cashews have finished toasting, sprinkle with the spice mixture and toss again to coat then pop into the oven for another 30-40 minutes.  Pull out of the oven and sprinkle lightly with a little salt and squeeze the lemon juice over the lot and stir before ttasting for seasoning.  Now, the most important thing is that they dry before you pour them into a bowl or storage tin – otherwise they’ll get soggy.  So, after you’ve tasted and adjusted for salt, I recomend popping them back into the oven with the door cracked so that they dry out and cool as the oven cools.  Then enjoy!