Many spices have doubled as folk remedies for centuries and are now under investigation for their possible benefit to modern medicine. This month we will explore a few of these, delving into the scientific and culinary possibilities they offer.
Ginger has been used for centuries in traditional medicine, and modern science is beginning to discover the many reasons why. Ginger is most commonly known as a digestive aid. Recent studies have shown that it does seem to help with nausea associated with pregnancy, with ginger more effective than placebo and comparable to vitamin B6 in a clinical study. Ginger is also being studied for its ability to ameliorate the nausea and vomiting often associated with chemotherapy. Ginger has also shown antileukemic activity and inhibition of ovarian cancer cell growth in human cell-based assays.
The recipe below was sent to CCSA as part of a series of emails from our resident chef, Dr. Linda Doody. She has been sharing her extensive collection of favorite recipes with friends, family, and the CCSA team as a means of maintaining connections during the COVID-19 pandemic.
You can read our other blog posts about ginger here and here.
No one is born a great cook. One learns by doing.
― Julia Child, My Life in France
Candied Spiced Nuts
- 1 large egg white
- 1 tsp water
- 4 cups raw nuts, such as pecan halves, almonds, Brazil nuts, macadamias, or cashews
- ½ cup sugar
- 1 tsp kosher salt (or ½ tsp table salt)
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp cayenne pepper (this can be deleted for candied nuts without heat)
- ¼ tsp ground ginger
- ¼ tsp ground nutmeg
- Position rack in the center of the oven and pre-heat to 300°F. Lightly oil a jellyroll pan. Combine the egg white and water in a large bowl and beat with a fork until frothy. Add nuts and mix well to coat. Combine remaining ingredients in a second medium bowl and add slowly to nuts, folding well to coat. Pour mixture into the prepared pan and bake for 30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes. Transfer the pan to a wire rack. Allow the nuts to cool completely; they will crisp up while cooling. Store in an airtight container until needed.
Note from Dr. Doody: These are great year-round and make a fabulous hors d’oeuvre. My sister-in-law and I tasted these (or something similar) while Christmas shopping one year, which led to an all-out search for the recipe. After trying a few, we decided this was the best.