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Candied Pine Nuts

by Assessor

These irresistibly rich and delicious Candied Pine Nuts are the perfect treat. With their buttery sweetness from maple syrup, a hint of vanilla, and a touch of cinnamon, they are simply amazing. The best part? They can be ready in less than 15 minutes (plus cooling time). So, let’s dive right into this delightful recipe!

Hello, friends! I hope you’re doing well and ready to enjoy the weekend. Any exciting plans? Well, we have some lined up too. We’ll be cozying up by burning wood to warm the house (and create a cozy ambiance), enjoying some hearty and warming soup (like this Chunky Sweet Potato Soup), and drinking lots of tea. Why all the tea? Well, we’re expecting a very cold night and an equally chilly day tomorrow. They’re predicting temperatures as low as ~25°C below zero, with wind chills around -40°C. Brr!

With such cold weather, we’ll definitely need a lot of tea. And of course, something delicious to go with it. These scrumptious Candied Pine Nuts are just what we need!

Believe it or not, I haven’t made or photographed any sweet recipes yet this year. (Don’t worry, it doesn’t mean we haven’t been indulging in desserts – we definitely have!) So, I decided to share this delightful recipe from last winter because it’s too good to keep to myself.

Pine Nuts

Now, before you think pine nuts are too expensive to use so generously in this recipe, let me share a little secret. We always buy our nuts – and we eat a lot of them – at Costco (not advertised; this is entirely my own opinion). You see, a ~600g bag of pine nuts costs just a little over 20 Canadian dollars there, which is quite reasonable. But if you were to buy pine nuts at other grocery stores, it would cost you around $10 for 150-200 grams. Can you see the difference? The same applies to other nuts and seeds. A Costco package of nuts can last a while for many people. Well, not our family – we go through them quite quickly. So, if you don’t already buy your nuts (and more) at a place like Costco, maybe it’s time to consider doing so!

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Making Candied Pine Nuts

Now, let’s get to the main attraction – these delicious Candied Pine Nuts. With just six ingredients (and four of them being optional), they’re incredibly easy to make. All you’ll need is butter, maple syrup, pine nuts, salt, vanilla extract, and cinnamon.

To start, combine the butter and maple syrup in a saucepan and boil until thickened and lightly browned. Then, reduce the heat, add the pine nuts, and cook, stirring often, for about ten minutes until the nuts are nicely toasted. If desired, you can also add vanilla extract and cinnamon for additional flavor.

The most challenging part of this recipe will be waiting for the nuts to cool slightly, which will take about 20 minutes. Once cooled, the Candied Pine Nuts will form easily breakable clusters. They have a soft, sugared texture (not quite caramelized) and are not brittle. Just be careful not to overcook the syrup, as it could turn into a harder candy coating.

I used two cups of pine nuts for this recipe, but feel free to adjust the amount to your liking. You can use as little as one cup or even half a cup. However, I must warn you that these Candied Pine Nuts will disappear faster than you think!

If you’re not a fan of pine nuts or don’t have any on hand, don’t worry. You can easily substitute them with other nuts of your choice. Cashews and pecans will give you a softer version, while walnuts or almonds will add a crunchier texture.

I hope you give these delicious Candied Pine Nuts a try soon. If you do, please let me know by commenting on this post, sending me an Instagram message, or sharing your photos with the hashtag #havocinthekitchen.

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Cheers and enjoy!

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