Completely addictive roasted sweet almonds

Hello People! Sorry its been a few weeks since my last post, had some computer issues (which im still dealing with) and work has been busy! But I wanted to get back in the swing of things with these amazing almonds.  I love to snack, and this is one of my favorite things to snack on during the day.  These almonds take me back to when my mom used to take my brothers and I to downtown Boston and she would always buy us the fresh hot nuts from the roasted nut stands.  It was one of my favorite things to eat and always looked forward to it.  One of the things I love about certain foods is the history and nostalgia behind it and how one thing can bring you back to when you were 8.    The smell is enticing and I wanted to create that in my own kitchen.  I had almonds but you could use a mix of nuts or one that you love!  Its super quick and easy.  These are sweet but you could make them savory or spicy! (hmmm sriracha roasted almonds anyone?)

 

Roasted Sweet Almonds

2 cups  whole almonds

1/2 cup sugar

1 teaspoon  kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350 and prepare a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a silpat.

1. Heat a saucepan to medium heat and add sugar.  Let that melt ( you can add a few drops of water here).   Add your nuts and stir with a rubber spatula.  Then add the salt and cinnamon.

2. Transfer nut mixture to the prepared baking sheet and put in oven for about 5 minutes or until your house smells like a roasted nut factory! Enjoy!

 

Photo Feb 24, 10 33 57 PM

This is what it looks like when it comes right out of the pot and ready for the oven

Photo Mar 03, 10 12 01 PM Photo Mar 03, 10 30 23 PM Photo Mar 03, 10 30 26 PM

 

 

 

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Butternut Squash and Black Bean Soup

I have been meaning to make butternut squash for the longest time, and just haven’t got around to making it.  It’s a great weeknight soup because you can make it super fast (30 minutes or less!) and makes great leftovers for lunch the next day.   I tend to go to the grocery store and buy things that I can freeze and make when I feel like it, one of those things is butternut squash.  I bought it a few months ago, cut it up and put in a plastic bag and kept it in my freezer.   I keep this soup super simple with just 3 ingredients; onions, garlic and squash.  I use my immersion blender to make  smooth creamy soups.  I had black beans and corn left over from my stuffed sweet potatoes , so I thought why not use them up and make a great addition to this soup.  The results were just what I wanted, the black beans added  the creaminess, and the corn (which I did not purée) gave the soup a nice texture against the smooth soup.  I cut up scallions and grated fresh parmigiano reggiano on top. Really. Really. Good

Butternut Squash and Black Bean Soup

Special Equipment- food processor or immersion blender (if you don’t have either of these this is a great chunky soup as well!)

1 lb of butternut squash cut into 1 inch pieces

3 cups vegetable, chicken or (like I used) homemade stock

2 cups black beans

1 cup of frozen corn

1 small onion chopped

2 cloves garlic cloves chopped

chopped scallion, grated or shaved parmigiano salt and pepper to taste

1. Put a large soup pot on medium heat with 2 tbs of olive or coconut oil

2. Saute onions and garlic for 3 minutes until the onions are beginning to soften

3. Add the butternut squash and let cook for another 5 minutes.  Add salt and pepper

4. Add the stock, corn and beans.  Let simmer for 10 minutes

5. Let cool.  Then blend in batches until creamy (if using food processor) or right in the pot (if using immersion blender)

6. Adjust seasonings (add a few drops of hot sauce if you wish!..I did)  Add scallions and cheese.  EAT!

Photo Feb 24, 8 17 25 PM (1)  Photo Feb 24, 8 27 12 PM Photo Feb 24, 8 27 23 PM (1)