Life has got in the way of much cooking or blogging of late, but I have plans to remedy that situation once the current exam period is over at school. I have lots of ideas for things which I never seem to have time to make, but I hope to share some of them with you in the next few weeks. In the meantime, I am making sure I keep up with the Daring Kitchen challenges.
Our Daring Cooks challenge for November was brining and roasting. Being a vegetarian household, I have limited brining options so I went nuts! I used equal weights of blanched almonds, raw cashews and hazelnuts. The same method (adapted from here) can be used for just about any nut or large seed, but the roasting time will vary significantly so I recommend doing a little research first. Also, my oven is hopeless at cooking things that need to be really dry, so I used the fan – you may not need it.
The nuts came out perfectly salted and nicely crunchy.
3/4 cup sea salt
Preheat oven to 150ºC, fan forced if needed.
Put the water and the salt into a medium saucepan. Heat while stirring until the salt dissolves.
Put the nuts into the brine and stir well.
Bring the mixture to a simmer and reduce the heat to low. Let it simmer for about three minutes.
Remove the nuts to a cookie sheet with a slotted spoon.
Spread the brined nuts around the cookie sheet in a single layer.
Put the cookie sheet into the preheated oven for 10 minutes.
Stir the nuts, then return them to the oven and let them continue to roast for about another 10 minutes.
When the nuts are dry with a lightly powdery salty coating, there is no surface moisture and they are starting to brown, remove them from the oven and spread them evenly on a paper-towel-lined cooling rack.
Let the nuts cool and dry for at least an hour, then put them into a ziploc bag or airtight container.
Daring Cooks blog-checking lines: Audax of Audax Artifax was our November 2012 Daring Cooks’ host. Audax has brought us into the world of brining and roasting, where we brined meat and vegetables and roasted them afterwards for a delicious meal!
Download the printable .pdf file here.