Maple Roasted Nut Clusters
Maybe you want that little something sweet but you're ready to say so long to Snickers or your Kashi oatmeal chocolate chip cookies- because you totally know the oatmeal does not make them good for you. If you're ready to ditch the refined sugar, high-fructose corn syrup stuff but still want a little sweetness in your life, these clusters may be just for you. The sweet part comes from REAL maple syrup (Mrs. Butterworth doesn't count), which is a source of magnesium, iron, and a number of B vitamins.
I am not a big fan of walnuts, but they work well in this recipe. You can substitute any nut or use a combination (like the almond and walnuts in the photo above), but the cool thing about walnuts is they have a particular form of Vitamin E that works to protect the heart. They are also loaded with antioxidants, some not found in other commonly-consumed foods.
Annnnd...before I give you the recipe, just one tip. You WILL want to put these out of your sight while they are cooling. Then you want to portion them and put them immediately away. Really. They are the perfect combination of salt, sugar, and fat and for some of us, that's a forget-being-mindful situation.
Maple Roasted Walnut Clusters
1 heaping c walnuts 1/2 c pure maple syrup (a little shy of 1/2 c even better) Sea salt to taste
Heat skillet over medium-low heat. (Love my cast iron for this.) Pour in walnuts and move around for a few minutes until they get a little toasty. Pour in syrup and stir nuts until bubbling syrup in mostly absorbed. Pour onto baking sheet and spread. Sprinkle with sea salt and move to a cooling area. After 10-15 minutes, your clusters will be ready to break apart and portion into muffin cups. Store in fridge for company or for your little-something-sweet moments.