This week’s recipe comes from an idea that my dad had: Sweet Chili Roasted Nuts. My mum had made him the Roasted Nuts with Rosemary, Garlic and Ancho Chile, but he wanted them to be spicier. So he said to me, “How about Sweet Chili Roasted Nuts?” I’m always up for creating a new recipe so off I went to the kitchen.
My dad absolutely loves snacking on peanuts. All my life, he has sat down at night and snacked on peanuts while reading, emailing or surfing Facebook. He did this every night. And I mean, every night. It is actually kinda comical at this point, because even my 5 year old says that we need to get him peanuts when he is coming to visit!
One time, my Mum and I got him rice crackers instead of peanuts. Let’s just say my Dad was not happy about that. We got him peanuts the next time we went to the grocery store.
You’re probably familiar with Sweet Chili sauce from your favorite asian restaurant. The contrasting sweet and spicy flavors make it an addictive sauce! The downside of this sauce is that it often contains a lot of sugar, which can be particularly troublesome for those that are watching their sugar intake, like my dad.
To recreate the sweet chili flavor, I used a combination of dark amber maple syrup and sambal oelek. Maple syrup gives that sticky yet subtle sweetness to the dish. There’s also a hint of smokiness too, which pairs nicely with the roasted nuts. Maple syrup has been shown to contain high levels of antioxidants, when compared to that of sugar or corn syrup. Some of these antioxidants can help to fight arthritis and other types of inflammation in the body. Maple syrup also has a low glycemic index, so no need to worry about a sugar crash!
Sambal oelek is spicy Indonesian sauce made of chilies, salt and vinegar. The word “sambal” means sauce or condiment, and “oelek” means ground by stone. Back in the old days, the chilies used to be ground to a paste using a stone – I imagine something similar to a mortar and pestle. The name “sambal oelek” is actually an old Dutch version of the Javanese name for the sauce. I learned all of this info from my dad so, thank you Dad!!!!
Any combination of nuts will work in this recipe. I used almonds, cashews and, of course, peanuts. There is something about the sticky, spicy, crunchy roasted nuts that make this such an addictive snack. The smoky sweetness from the maple syrup is such a great compliment to the bright spiciness of the sambal. I challenge you to eat only one! It’s impossible!
I think my Dad would really like this recipe. It’s basically everything he literally wants, or requested, in a snack, plus it’s refined sugar free and tastes delicious!
This is a great Father’s Day treat too. It is super easy to make, packed with protein and nutrients, and full of bold flavor that most Dads would love. It’s also a perfect snack to go with a beer or soda while he’s watching TV. What Dad wouldn’t love to relax on Father’s Day with an awesome snack?!!
So Happy Father’s Day to all the dads out there! Hope you have an awesome day filled with lots of delicious treats!
A healthy, spicy twist on a flavorful and addictive snack… roasted nuts!!!
- 1 egg white
- ¼ tsp Pink Himalayan salt
- 2 tbsp dark amber maple syrup
- 2 tbsp sambal oelek draining off as much liquid as possible
- 3 cups of mixed nuts such as almonds, cashews and peanuts
Preheat oven to 325 deg F. Spray a baking tray with non-stick spray and set aside.
In a large bowl, beat the egg white and salt together with a whisk until it starts looking foamy.
Add in the maple syrup and sambal oelek and whisk together.
Stir in the mixed nuts, ensuring every nut is evenly coated with the seasoning mixture.
Pour the nut mixture onto the greased baking tray and spread it out to an even layer.
Roast the nuts for 20-25 minutes, stirring approximately halfway through cooking time to prevent burning. The nuts are ready when they are golden brown and crunchy.
Cool the nuts on the tray and then transfer to an airtight container.
Leftover nuts can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature