As with most things we eat, the only way to make a bowl of bar nuts taste even better is to add fat and sugar. And when the fat comes from bacon, better goes right to best.
For a party-worthy mix, splurge on high-quality bacon, and buy fresh raw nuts: These staples of the snack drawer go rancid faster than you think. Use just one type -- cashews are a favorite -- or any mix, such as hazelnuts and pistachios.
Make Ahead: These are best served the same day they are made.
Servings: 2.5 cups
- 2 cups (8 ounces) mixed raw nuts
- 1 large egg white, lightly beaten
- 2 tablespoons packed dark brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or to taste
- 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
- 4 slices uncooked bacon
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Place a wire rack over a swath of paper towels.
Combine the nuts and egg white in a mixing bowl; toss to coat evenly.
Stir together the brown sugar, salt, cumin, cinnamon, cayenne and ginger in a small bowl. Add the spice mixture to the nuts, and toss again to coat evenly.
Scrape the nuts onto the baking sheet, spreading them in a single layer. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, stirring often to break up any clumps, until the nuts are lightly toasted. Use a spatula to transfer the nuts to a plate, spreading them in a single layer to cool. Leave the oven on and reserve the parchment-lined baking sheet.
Brush the bacon slices with the maple syrup on both sides and arrange in a single layer on the reserved baking sheet. Bake for about 20 minutes, turning them over once, until crisp on both sides.
Transfer the bacon to the wire rack to drain and cool. Break the strips into small pieces.
Place the cooled nuts in a serving bowl, then add the bacon and toss to incorporate just before serving.
Adapted from "Good Food to Share: Recipes for Entertaining With Family and Friends," by Sara Kate Gillingham-Ryan (Weldon Owen, 2011).
Tested by Bonnie S. Benwick.
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