Chipotle chili powder makes them naughty, white and dark brown sugars make them nice, coarse salt and cinnamon make them awesome. Coat your favorite craggy nut with this combo for an addictive holiday treat that also makes a great gift.
Preheat oven to 300º with the oven rack in the middle position. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicon baking mat. In a medium bowl, combine the sugars, cinnamon, salt and chili powder and mix until no lumps remain. You may need to use your fingers to break up all of the brown sugar. Set the mixture aside.
In a separate bowl large enough to toss the nuts, beat the egg white with 1 tablespoon water until frothy. Add the nuts and stir to coat evenly. Sprinkle all of the sugar mixture over the nuts and fold a few times until evenly coated. (I find a rubber spatula is more useful than a spoon for this.) Spread the nuts in a single layer on the prepared baking sheet. Bake for 30 minutes, stirring at least once halfway through. Let cool completely, breaking up any nuts that stick together.
To substitute hot smoked paprika for the chipotle chili powder, use 1/4 teaspoon. To substitute cayenne, use about 1/8 teaspoon.
I stir the nuts at the 15 minute mark, 20 minute mark and again at the 25 minute mark. I find they bake and dry out more evenly but it could be my oven.
The nuts can be stored in an air tight container for about a week. Do not store until completely cooled.
***If you have a severe gluten allergy or sensitivity or otherwise are serious about eliminating gluten from your diet, always check your labels carefully and buy certified gluten free products.