I had some delicious spiced almonds that were very dry – not oily or sweet – with a wonderful cumin flavour. I couldn’t work out how they achieved this because all the spiced nut recipes I had seen either used oil or sugar to stick the spices to the nuts. After some searching I found a Martha Stewart recipe where she used egg white to bind the spices and nuts together. I didn’t much like the particular spice blend she used but with some experimentation I managed to get a pretty good approximation to the nuts I liked.
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
3 tablespoons ground cumin (or any mix of spices you desire)
2 ½ cups almonds (or any mix of nuts such as cashews, walnuts or pecans)
Preheat the oven to 150oC. Beat egg white until soft and foamy. Stir salt, sugar and spices into the egg white. Stir in the almonds until well coated.
Spread the nuts in a single layer onto an ungreased baking tray. Bake for 15 minutes. Remove from oven and using a metal spatula, stir and separate the nuts. Return the nuts to the oven and bake until medium brown – about 10 minutes. Remove from oven and stir again. Place baking tray on a wire rack to cool (the nuts will crisp as they cool). Break up any that stick together. Store in an airtight container.