A gentle heat makes these seasoned walnuts ideal with cocktails.
1 pound (about 4 cups) walnut halves
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup water
2/3 cup (4 ounces) sesame seeds
1 1/4 teaspoons cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
How to Make It
Preheat the oven to 350° and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a large, wide saucepan, combine the walnuts, sugar and water and bring to a boil. Add the sesame seeds, cayenne and salt and cook over moderate heat, stirring constantly, until the water is nearly evaporated, about 4 minutes. Lower the heat and cook, stirring constantly, until the walnuts are golden brown and sandy, about 4 minutes longer.
Immediately pour the walnuts onto the prepared baking sheet and spread in a single layer. Bake for about 20 minutes, until the nuts are deeply golden and covered with a sandy coating. Let the walnuts cool completely. Break any large clusters apart; transfer to a bowl to serve.
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