The holidays are in full swing and that means there are social events and parties on the calendar. I don't know about you but I am always looking for hostess gifts that are festive but useful too. This year I thought I'd take a simple recipe for Chinese Fried Walnuts, change it up a bit and put the finished product in a handmade holiday gift box that can be used again.
My mother has been making Chinese Fried Walnuts for years. I have memories of her frying them in the kitchen during the holidays and we would sneak a few when we walked by because they were so good. I love fried walnuts but I love pecans even more so I decided to switch out the walnuts for pecans this time to try something new. They turned out great. Feel free to use walnuts though, if you prefer. They are delicious too!
I wanted to give my nuts as hostess gifts so I placed them in a festive box. These pretty patterned gift boxes were actually purchased for the guests to use as take home containers at the candy bar at my daughters wedding. We simply hot glued an acrylic snow flake ornament (purchased at Michael's Craft Store) to the top of each box. We had some left over so I decided to get them out and use them for gifts this year. They are perfect for all types of small items and they can even be used as a decoration. It's a simple thing that makes presenting the gift a little more fun!
- 1 lb pecans (or walnuts)
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- salt to taste
- Bring 6 cups of water to a boil in a medium saucepan.
- Add nuts and boil for one minute.
- Drain nuts in a colander and quickly rinse with hot water.
- Toss nuts with sugar.
- Heat oil in a large frying pan over medium heat.
- Add nuts to oil and fry until light brown, about 3-5 minutes.
- Carefully remove nuts from hot oil with a slotted or mesh spoon and drain in a colander over saucepan.
- Spoon nuts onto parchment paper to cool.
- When nuts are completely cooled, sprinkle with salt to taste and break apart.
If you are placing nuts in a gift box or container that is not airtight, place them in a plastic bag first so they stay fresh.