I like having little snack foods around the house. Something I can just grab a quick handful of as I go about my day, cleaning house, playing with the dogs, being awesome,
avoiding doing chores. I like these snacks to be crunchy but flavorful and preferably something easy to make. I also like a variety of flavors…I bore easily, after all. Hey, let’s go ride bikes!
I’m just kidding. It’s too cold outside to ride bikes.
Anyway, these almonds are great. I made them last year as Christmas gifts. I started making them again this fall as snacks for get-togethers or just to keep around the house. I’ve tried a few different flavors, my favorites being rosemary-olive oil, and cinnamon-sugar. The pumpkin spice were pretty good, too. Last year, I made these with regular sugar but this year I started making them with Splenda so that my sugar-conscious friends could still enjoy them and to be honest, you really can’t tell the difference.
Everyone loves munching on the sweet (or savory) and crunchy little snacks. If you need a snack to put out before holiday meals this year, this is it. They also make great, hand-made gifts wrapped up in pretty cellophane bags and tied with a bow. And if you get almonds from a bulk-food co-op or store like Costco, they can be really affordable too!
Sugar-free Cinnamon Almonds
- 4 cups whole blanched almonds
- 1 egg white
- 1/2 cup Splenda
- 1 heaping tablespoon cinnamon
- Preheat the oven to 250F.
- Whip the egg white until frothy (just a minute or so). Add in the splenda and cinnamon and the fold in the almonds. Stir until the almonds are thoroughly coated in the mixture.
- Line a baking pan with parchment or tinfoil and spread the almonds out on the pan. Bake at 250F for one hour. Let cool and eat! Store in an airtight container.
More interested in the rosemary-olive oil almonds? Replace the egg white with 1/4 cup olive and replace the Splenda and cinnamon with a couple tablespoons of chopped fresh rosemary.
For pumpkin spice almonds, sub a tablespoon of pumpkin pie spice for the cinnamon in this recipe.
And don't forget all the other flavors you could try---chili and lime (a bit of lime juice and zest and chili powder), cocoa almonds (canola oil, cocoa powder, confectioner's sugar), or even vanilla bean almonds (scrape the seeds from a vanilla bean or use vanilla bean paste and mix that into white or brown sugar). Be creative! And enjoy.
© Have Fork, Will Eat
Despite the variety of pumpkin dishes that I have made, some recently, I am actually not that big a fan of pumpkin. Josh is. There is, however, one pumpkin thing that I adore: the seeds. In fact, ever since I was a little kid, one of my favorite things about Halloween was carving my pumpkin and roasting the seeds. We did it every year, even after I got too told to trick-or-treat, and it’s a tradition I carry on now. I mean, sure I could do this anytime of year just by buying some raw pumpkin seeds from the store but that’s not nearly as fun. I mean, if you’re going to carve pumpkins for Halloween anyway, why let all those delicious seedy innards go to waste? No, no, that’s precious currency right there. However, it has come to my attention–namely through my husband Josh, who, before meeting me, had never roasted pumpkin seeds before–that there are actually people in the world that have never roasted pumpkin seeds before. And this sort of injustice cannot stand. How can I just ignore the sad, desperate pleas echoing out of the darkness from those who’ve never experienced the crunchy, salty, buttery goodness of a freshly roasted bowl of pepitos? Continue reading
I like to snack, and I like healthy but delicious snacks. So the other day at work, I made up this beautiful little concoction:
This is a delicious little yogurt parfait made with Fage 0% Greek yogurt. Greek yogurt, if you’ve never had it, is much thicker than the yogurt we normally pick up at the store, because it’s strained in order to remove the whey. The Fage yogurt has the consistency of say, warm cream cheese. It’s comes plain, but I would never eat it like that. It’s traditionally the base for tzaziki sauce, which is that great cucumber-dill sauce you often get on gyros or other Greek dishes. Here, it’s flavored with a couple tablespoons of my grandmother’s homemade strawberry jam and topped with the crumbles from my last homemade granola bars and the last few strawberries from my trip to the farmer’s market. The combination of the sweet strawberries, the chocolate and the coconutty crunch of the granola was excellent, if I do say so myself.
Try it out, and customize it…use raspberries, peaches, blueberries, apricots…after all, breakfast is the most important meal of the day.
Lately I’ve been making my own granola bars. I blame Whole Foods for this development; I got the inspiration while looking through the snack recipes on their website and found one for chocolate chip granola bars. It looked pretty simple (it IS pretty simple) and besides, I love granola bars but often they make me sick. I tend to have bouts of reactive hypoglycemia fairly often and commercial granola bars are usually full of sugar and corn syrup which is a bad thing for me to have, and natural store-bought granola bars are pretty expensive. So I thought, why not? I’ll make my own. It’ll be like the culinary equivalent of cutting down your own trees for wood. Or something like that.