Before jumping right into the recipe on this link,
Here is a bit of Levantine Entertaining & Love of Snacking
When we entertain guests, it is very common for the hostess to have placed a few bowls of assorted toasted nuts – in a variety of flavours – on the centre and side tables, so guests munch on them along with their drinks and until dinner is served. Sometimes even when friends visit, it is popular to serve these nuts among the other snacks and dips… In less formal and humbler societies nuts and seeds are very popular snacks that are usually taken for picnics and many people back in the day will have spent the whole afternoon and a big chunk of the night munching on these nuts and ceaselessly cracking seeds for the delicious little pearl of heart inside.
A little more back in time, people even took those same snacks to the – much humbler forms of – movie theatres that were present at the time. Once the movie was over, and the lights were on, the floor will have become no more and shells will have taken over to decor the floor of the theatre! Just imagine what amount of seed cracking will have taken place if there was any suspense in the movie!! :))
While back in the day it most likely was toasted, salted nuts or (less popular then than now) the raw nuts especially almonds, which are among my favourite snacks ever; in the recent decades many new flavours have emerged, from BBQ, to even cheese and I even once found a Mexican Jalapeno and cheese flavoured nuts… The variation is fun and allows you to play with themes, where even your choice of nuts can go with your whole menu or event’s theme.
My favourite flavour is smoked almonds, however, you can choose to go with BBQ flavour, chilli flavour or even cumin. Really any spice mix you prefer works well here. Also you can carry out the same recipe using walnuts, macadamia or even cashews..
You might have to break the pieces apart as at home you do not have a revolver to revolve the nuts in order to keep them coated yet separate. But that is not such an issue really.
* Smoked Spices – there is a special mix called “Smoked Spices” that you can buy from spice markets and speciality stores that gives the exact flavour of spiced nuts you buy from vendors. However if you are unable to find this mix you can simply smoke your spices at home. A very easy way to do this is to place them in a foil bowl in a smoker with lit smoking chips (of course in a very well ventilated area) and smoke them until the chips burn out and the smoke fades. Another one is to use a smoking gun and place them under a smoking cloche and smoke them that way.
Go Nuts! Why not!
If you are into smoked flavours, then check out