May 13, 2010
Anyone who has ever visited New York City has experienced the wonderfully intoxicating aroma that wafts from the Nuts-4-Nuts carts all over the city. Heck, even if you haven't been to New York City surely you've had the delicious taste experience that is a honey roasted nut!
Before I was a health-conscious vegan I could easily sit down and put away an entire can of Planters honey-roasted peanuts or several bags of these street-cart nuts native to my hometown. I'd love to say I lost my taste for them but I haven't. Every time I find myself in a quickie mart I'm tempted to indulge... and bitter, cold days in New York make me ache for these nuts, too.
Luckily I share this honey-nut-obsession with Nick, HH's intern, who suggested we try to recreate the taste with chickpeas. That boy is a genius! When he visited me a few weeks ago we got busy working on this recipe. It took a few trials to get it right but when we did... what a pay day!
You're going to go nuts for these "nuts," I promise.
And after my melancholy post yesterday, allow me to divert you to a very raw (and hilarious) interview of me done by a close friend from college, Bandina. (It's up)
Prep time: | Cook time: | Total: | 8 servings
All the taste of New York City's famous honey roasted peanuts without the nuts! Crunchy and full of protein, you'll be hooked on these sweet chickpeas!
15 ounces chickpeas, drained and rinsed
2 tbsp pure maple syrup
1 tbsp agave nectar
½ tsp vanilla extract
¼ tsp cinnamon
2 tbsp raw sugar
Place chickpeas on a clean kitchen towel and allow to air dry, about 15 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat toaster oven to 350 F (or conventional oven to 325 F). Grease your cookie sheet or toaster oven tray, or line with parchment paper (preferred method). Transfer dry chickpeas on the sheet, making sure to line them up in single layer with no overlap. Lightly spray with cooking spray and bake 30 to 35 minutes, until crunchy. Meanwhile, whisk all remaining ingredients together, except for raw sugar, in a medium mixing bowl and set aside. Transfer raw sugar to a small food processor or grinder and process until smooth, fine and powdery -- a cross between the consistency of white refined sugar and confectioners (powdered) sugar. Dump the roasted chickpeas into the syrup mixture and stir to coat. Once evenly coated, sprinkle sugar over chickpeas, stirring gently, until all chickpeas have a nice sugar coating. Return to baking tray and bake for another 5 to 15 minutes, until there is a crystallized glaze and the chickpeas are completely crunchy, being careful not to burn.