When it comes to versatile ingredients, walnuts are a culinary superstar. A handful of walnuts makes a tasty, nutritious, and satisfying snack, packing heart-healthy fats, fiber, and vitamins and minerals (including B vitamins, copper, and manganese), per Healthline. Furthermore, walnuts add a complementary crunch to many dishes and snacks, from warm chocolate chip cookies to green salads to sweet and salty trail mixes.
Similarly to other nuts, toasting raw walnuts makes them undoubtedly more crunchy and flavorful, but knowing the best method for toasting them can be a much more doubtful endeavor. Luckily, it's rather simple -- all you need to do is toss them onto a baking sheet and pop them in an oven. This is a superior method if you want to toast the most walnuts at once and ensure that each nut cooks evenly. However, depending on the time and equipment you have on hand, there are other viable toasting methods that will leave you with irresistibly golden-brown, aromatic, and flavorful walnuts.
A Simple, Gratifying, And Customizable Process
Toasting walnuts on your own may seem like an overly sophisticated process, especially when you can easily buy them pre-toasted at a grocery store. However, the best method for achieving toasted walnuts is simple and quick.
An oven or toaster oven is ideal for the most even result, as it gives your walnuts more room to spread out and cook through evenly. In a conventional oven especially, you will have plenty of room to toast a large quantity of walnuts. For optimal toasty walnuts, just toss them in at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for up to ten minutes. In order to prevent burning, keep a close eye on the nuts and consider stirring them every few minutes. When the walnuts are golden-brown, take them out of the oven and transfer them to a cooler surface by spreading them evenly on a plate, which will prevent any further burning. The scent that comes off of your toasting walnuts will leave your kitchen smelling divine.
What's more, by toasting your own walnuts, you can customize the flavor with your favorite seasonings, sauces, and oils. Many cooks choose to douse their walnuts in olive oil and salt before toasting, to add extra flavor. You can also add a touch of sweetness by adding honey, maple syrup, or a simple syrup glaze; or, add herbs like rosemary, parsley, or chili powder, for example.
Other Methods For Toasting Walnuts
The oven method is not the only method for toasting walnuts. If you do not need to toast in bulk, or if you have only five minutes and a non-stick pan, toasting walnuts on the stovetop will do the job. All you need to do is keep the heat low and the walnuts stirring. Transfer the nuts to a cool surface once finished to prevent burning.
For an especially quick toast, you can heat walnuts in small quantities in the microwave. Arrange the walnuts evenly on a microwave-safe plate and start them out on high heat for one minute. Stir them up and continue microwaving for 30-second intervals, stirring in between each interval, until the nuts are golden-brown. The number of walnuts you throw in should be at most a handful, as bigger batches tend to heat less evenly in the microwave.
Ultimately, the "best" method for toasting walnuts is subjective. No matter how much time you want to dedicate, how big your batch of walnuts is, and what kitchen equipment you are willing to use, you can achieve perfectly toasty walnuts. Embrace the freedom of choice in the process, and get to toasting.
Read the original article on Daily Meal.