Crispy Rosemary Walnuts

By • October 7, 2010 14 Comments

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Author Notes: Here’s uncomplicated slow food at its best. We enjoy these fragrant morsels in salads, baked in savory scones, and simply eaten out of hand. You'll find that, unlike many savory nuts, these have a delicate scent, and a mild flavor that does not overwhelm that of the nuts. The technique of brining nuts before roasting at a low heat for a long time is from Sally Fallon’s “Nourishing Traditions.” These are a first cousin to my Crispy Spice-Brined Pecans, also posted here on Food52. Enjoy!! ;o)

Makes 2 cups of nuts

  • 2 cups of raw walnut halves and large pieces
  • 2 branches of fresh rosemary, each 4-5 inches (preferably, just picked)
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  1. Bring 1 1/2 cups of water to a boil. Pour it into a glass or ceramic bowl with the rosemary branches and the salt.
  2. Cool to lukewarm, then stir it well. Add the nuts and allow them to soak for about 8 hours.
  3. Heat oven to 150 degrees Fahrenheit.
  4. Remove the rosemary branches, then drain the nuts and spread them on a large baking sheet, with plenty of room between the nuts. I like to use parchment for this.
  5. Roast for 12 – 15 hours, taking care to open the door of the oven after the first 30 minutes, and then after the first hour, if you can, to let the steam out. Stir the nuts 3 or 4 times during the roasting period. Store in a tightly lidded container.
  6. Enjoy!! ;o)
  7. NB: Some ovens turn themselves off automatically after a pre-determined length of time. I discovered this one morning when I came into the kitchen expecting to see my nuts nearing the end of their roasting cycle. I'd been baking the evening before, and just turned my oven way down before putting the nuts in, immediately before going to bed. The oven turned itself off at some point during the night. I ended up turning the oven back on and letting the nuts roast for a few more hours. In any event, if you've had the oven on for other purposes and you want to roast the nuts overnight, turn the oven off first, and then turn it back on, to avoid this problem. ;o)

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