Olive roasted Almonds

The initial roasting of the almonds in the pan does a great job browning the exterior. When followed up by the slow oven roast, it reduces the moisture content of the almonds to almost zero. When that is combined with the warm olives the fried rosemary, and the dried flavor from the juice the olives were stored in – WOW… It’s like eating a grown up version of popcorn.

This makes for a great appetizer, as you can make it ahead, and then just pop it in the oven at 325 for 15 minutes prior to serving.

2 Tbs Olive Oil
3 inch sprig of Rosemary
8 Oz Raw Whole Almonds
1 Tbs Sea Salt
4 Oz of assorted Greek Olives in red wine vinegar
¼ cup of “olive juice” from the Greek olives

Preheat oven to 325 Degrees F.
Preheat olive oil in an oven safe frying pan over medium/high heat until the oil starts to shimmer.
Remove leaves from rosemary, and place leaves in oil, tossing until all leaves are coated.
Reduce heat to medium
Add almonds and salt and toss in oil, let roast for 10 minutes, stirring every 2 minutes (almonds will start to make a popping noise.
Add olives and olive juice to the almonds.
Transfer entire mix to the oven and roast for 30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes.
Remove from oven and serve while still warm.

The trick to this dish is getting the almonds nice and brown before putting them in the oven. The heat of the pan while on the stove causes all sorts of chemical reactions, creating some pretty great flavor compounds. However, if you were to keep the almonds on the stove, they would burn before the moisture in the middle was gone. By using a two step browning/roasting strategy, you get the intense flavor of the browning process, with the light texture that comes from evaporating off the moisture in the oven. This is a GREAT appetizer that will go fast. Make extra.

1 comment to Olive roasted Almonds

You must be logged in to post a comment.