Rosemary and Thyme Walnuts

February 12, 2014
Rosemary and Thyme Walnuts - Walnuts from our very own tree deserved a little bit of fancy .. these addictive spiced nuts are a great snack, meal topper, or gift for a good friend

This isn't the first time

I've lived beneath the shade of a beautiful old walnut tree

Walnuts 1

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So I shouldn't have been surprised when, this fall, the sound of nuts hitting the roof above my office began.  “What IS that?  Oh yes, I remember that sound. “

My husband and I tried to stay on top of clean up.  A couple of bucketfuls every time we took the puppies out, “Are we done yet?”

He'd smile and look up, “Nope, looks like there are still a few more.”

Our-Walnut-Tree-2

Rinse, lather, repeat, until one day, a friend asked if we would save them for him instead.  The claim was there weren't many things better than a walnut harvested, dried, and prepared yourself.  I was skeptical

Process modified, our buckets diverted, instead filling a couple of bins in the garage

To be quite honest, I'd forgotten all about them, until this weekend when we reaped the benefits.  A surprise mason jar left on the table inside our front door

Rosemary and Thyme Walnuts - Walnuts from our very own tree deserved a little bit of fancy .. these addictive spiced nuts are a great snack, meal topper, or gift for a good friend

I didn't have to try many; these things announced themselves in a big way.  My tastes were expecting an English walnut, maybe intensified a bit.  I mean please, there couldn't be THAT much of a difference, right?

Wrong

These little morsels were very un-walnut; the taste of earth, bittersweet, musty, and thick.  They tasted like something he'd worked hard to get like you did a whole season of farming in just a couple of hours.

Rosemary and Thyme Walnuts - Walnuts from our very own tree deserved a little bit of fancy .. these addictive spiced nuts are a great snack, meal topper, or gift for a good friend

I investigated further.  Good heavens, this really was no small task.

They're messy, the staining from the oil can be something awful, in addition to being incredibly tough nuts to crack (literally!)  Aside from using a huller, I've read about people using hammers, drills, cars; one person even putting them in a cement mixer with rocks

Once they're hulled, you're not done quite yet, needing to let them dry a few weeks before cracking.  A good rule of thumb, when one can shake the nut and hear a rattle; it's time

Rosemary and Thyme Walnuts - Walnuts from our very own tree deserved a little bit of fancy .. these addictive spiced nuts are a great snack, meal topper, or gift for a good friend

After a few mornings spent sprinkling them on my yogurt with fruit, I remembered a spiced nut recipe, rosemary, and thyme the stars of the show.

Adding English walnuts to increase the volume, I was in and out of the kitchen in less than fifteen minutes.  A delicious snack that didn't disappoint.  The nuts were full of flavor from the fresh herbs, salty yet a hint of sweet.

They're a beautiful snack on their own, or additions to meals like lunch salads when one wants a healthy fat.

Rosemary and Thyme Walnuts - Walnuts from our very own tree deserved a little bit of fancy .. these addictive spiced nuts are a great snack, meal topper, or gift for a good friend

I imagine they would make great gifts for friends and family as well.

Enjoy!

xoxo

~ Adapted from AllSpice

Rosemary and Thyme Walnuts

Ingredients

  • 5 tsp olive oil
  • 5 tsp maple syrup
  • ½ tsp smoked paprika (the original called for ¼ tsp cayenne pepper)
  • 1 Tbsp fresh rosemary, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp fresh thyme, chopped
  • 3 cups walnut halves
  • ¼ tsp kosher salt

Instructions

  • Heat oven to 350° F
  • In a bowl, whisk olive oil, maple syrup and smoked paprika
  • Stir in rosemary and thyme
  • Add walnut halves, and toss well to coat. Spread evenly on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  • Bake until fragrant and crisp, 10 to 12 minutes. Sprinkle with salt while the nuts are still warm
  • Allow to cool completely before storing in an air-tight container
Serves: 12
Nutrition + Show
Rating:
Calories 173
Total Fat 17g
Saturated Fat 1.8g
Carbohydrates 4.8g
Fiber 1.5g
Sugars 2.4g
Protein 3.8g
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