Moroccan-esque Almonds (you HAFTA MAKE these!)

Yes, I AM nuts about nuts, starting back in 1965 when my parents would leave on base (Evreux-Fauville AFB) every morning so I could play the organ at both 9am and 12pm masses.  They’d give me 35 cents–just enough for a 15 cent bag of peanuts, a 10 cent coke, and a 10 cent Archie and Veronica comic book (the comic book was really 12 cents, but the air force base retail businesses didn’t seem to believe in pennies at that time).  I was in heaven. I would buy all three treasures, turn my back to the airmen eating Sunday morning breakfast there, and indulge.

I made several of these nut recipes this winter for friends, placing them in small glassine bags tied with black grosgrain ribbon.  Ribbon — another fetish.  This recipe was my favorite. Photo soon.

¼ c. sugar (I might try even a little less next time)
1 tsp. ground coriander
½ tsp. ground cloves
2 tsps cinnamon
1 egg white
1 ½ tsps grated orange zest
2 c. (about 8 ounces) whole, unblanched almonds

Cooking spray or vegetable oil for the pan.

Preheat the oven to 275 degrees. Line a rimmed baking pan with aluminum foil, and spray or brush lightly with vegetable oil.

Combine the sugar and spices in a small bowl, and stir. In a separate bowl, whisk the egg white until frothy. Add the spices to the egg, and whisk again. Stir in the orange zest, then the almonds, and mix until the nuts are well-coated.

Pour the nuts onto the prepared baking pan and spread them into a single layer. Bake for 40 minutes. Every 10 minutes or so, give the baking pan a shake, and push the nuts around with a heat-safe spatula. Remove the nuts from the oven, and let them cool to room temperature on the baking pan.

The nuts will keep in an airtight container for up to 3 weeks.

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