When I was a kiddo—the eldest of many grandchildren and naturally the leader of all things adventure and trouble—my grandfather would fire up the grill on summer days and I’m convinced it wasn’t just to char some hotdogs for us. It was to make our memories of running around barefoot in “Maud & Daud’s” yard even more layered and rich. Fresh grass, woodsmoke, chlorine smell on our soaked bathing suits… this is why I always prefer a Mezcal margarita over a silver-tequila one. And likely why I have Liquid Smoke in the fridge and smoked paprika in the spice drawer to use as much as possible. Smoky foods taste like love to me.
I miss these two so much. They were the greatest.
So this is a recipe for my grandparents—who always had bowls of M&Ms, pistachios, and snacks on every table.
It’s a quick and easy one to keep on hand for the times you want some crunch. They’re also a nice addition to a big ole mixing-bowl salad—they add an incredible depth of flavor to sweet greens or hearty kale. And I bet Daudie would have loved some with a bourbon on the rocks and a blacked hot dog.
You can also make this recipe raw with a dehydrator if you have one.
2 cups raw, whole almonds
3 tablespoons raw honey (you can use any sticky sweetener you prefer)
1 tablespoon unrefined coconut oil (warmed to liquid) or grapeseed oil
1/2 teaspoon coarse or fine-ground sea salt (Chef’s choice, coarse adds more texture)
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon fresh lime zest (optional)
Let’s get started.
1. Preheat the oven to 350°F and line a baking sheet with unbleached parchment paper.
2. In a large bowl, stir together all ingredients until almonds are thoroughly coated.
3. Scatter almonds 1-almond deep on the baking sheet and roast for 8–12 minutes until browned. Remove from oven and allow to cool thoroughly—honey will harden as the almonds cool.
Now, I want to hear from YU. What are some of the foods you love thanks to childhood memories? What do you think of this recipe? Tell us with a comment below.