Do you know what often makes the difference between an everyday salad and the fancier salads that we are willing to pay for in restaurants? A couple of minutes in the skillet and a spoonful of sugar. That is all that is required to transform a handful of plain sliced almonds into a slightly sweet and crunchy topping perfect for any salad!
It never fails to make me grin when I serve a salad and the first question I hear is, “where did you get these nuts?” These almonds taste better than any salad toppings you can buy in a store and they cost a whole lot less as well.
Just a few minutes is all it takes to make your salad extra special.
I like to keep a container of these nuts in an airtight container in the pantry or in the freezer. They will keep nicely for at least a couple of weeks in the pantry and months in the freezer. (Probably longer, but mine never last that long!)
Kitchen Tips: How To Caramelize Almonds
- 1 teaspoon butter
- 1/2 cup sliced almonds
- 1 tablespoon sugar *
- In a large skillet, melt the butter over medium high heat. When it is just starting to foam, add the almonds and stir to coat them with butter. When the almonds are hot and slightly toasty, sprinkle with the sugar and stir constantly as it melts onto them. This should only take a few minutes.
- After the sugar has caramelized and the nuts have turned slightly brown, remove from the heat and immediately pour the almonds out on a piece of parchment paper or a silpat mat.
- Using two forks (because the almonds will be very hot!) separate them to prevent them from clumping as they cool. Once cool, store in an airtight container. Enjoy!
- * You can use 2-3 tablespoons of sugar, but I like them a bit less sweet for myself.