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Dark Chocolate Cinnamon Walnuts

Mexican-spiced, dark-chocolate-drenched walnuts flavored with cinnamon and chili powder for extra kick are a perfect snack. Bet you can't eat just one!


By Molly Katzen for the California Walnut Board

Dark Chocolate Cinnamon Walnuts

Whole walnut halves are best used in this California Walnut Board recipe.

Yield: 12 servings


Nonstick spray
12 oz. (340g) semisweet chocolate, chopped into small pieces
¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2-3 tbsps. (29-42g) sugar
2 tsps. cinnamon
½ tsp. New Mexico chili powder and/or a dash or two of cayenne (optional)
2 cups California walnut halves
3 cups dried fruit (such as a mixture of cranberries, blueberries, etc.)
*Note: Try to save your most perfect unbroken walnut halves for this, as it looks really nice to have the whole piece coated with all the goodies.


Lightly spray the top pan of a double boiler with a nonstick spray, then add the chocolate. Place it over simmering water on low heat to allow it to melt slowly. Don't stir or in any way disturb the melting chocolate.

In the meantime, spray 3 dinner plates with nonstick spray. In a medium-small bowl, thoroughly combine the cocoa powder, sugar, cinnamon and optional chili powder and/or cayenne. Sprinkle about half the powder mixture onto the prepared plates, shaking it into a fairly even layer on each plate. Leave the other half of the dry mix in the bowl.

When the chocolate has melted (and leaving it over the double boiler, but with the heat turned off) add 1 cup of walnuts, gently stirring and turning them in the chocolate until each half is completely coated. Use tongs to lift out the coated nuts, one by one, and transfer to a cocoa-powdered plate in a single layer. Dust the top with a little of the reserved dry mix and set aside Continue with the next cup of walnuts and repeat exactly, using the second prepared plate. Repeat again with the final batch.

When all is assembled, put the plates in the refrigerator for up to 30 minutes, allowing the chocolate coating to harden. When it's hard, loosen the coated nuts with a dinner knife and transfer to a bowl. Add in the dried fruit and gently combine. Transfer to a container with a tightly fitted lid. Store in the refrigerator or freezer and serve (or just eat) as desired.

Recipe and photo are from Molly's Favorite Walnut Recipes produced by the California Walnut Board. All rights reserved.

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