Tonight is book club night! I love our book club, it is just enough intellectual discussion, with a good measure of girly gossip and wine drinking thrown in the mix. This month, I chose Cheryl Strayed's memoir Wild: Lost and Found on the Pacific Crest Trail. Cheryl hiked about 1,000 miles of the PCT alone when she was 26 years old. Her journey was more than a physical one, and throughout the book, it feels as if we are on the trail with her, not only because of her intensely poetic descriptions, but also because she draws us into her emotional journey as well, in a way that is raw, honest, and truly relatable.
In honor of the book, I thought it would be appropriate to make some trail mix. But this is not ordinary trail mix, it is spicy and sweet and salty. I'm actually a little bit obsessed with the combination of the spicy chipotle nuts and the dark chocolate - it's a match made in heaven. I'd like to think that Cheryl would have loved to have a batch of this in her monsterous hiking pack!
Chocolate Chipotle Trail Mix1 cup dark chocolate chips
1 cup dried unsweetened cranberries
For the nuts:
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground chipotle chile pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1 large egg white
1 cup whole unsalted, unroasted almonds
1 cup roasted, unsalted cashews
1 cup unsalted pumpkinseeds
Preheat oven to 325°.
Combine sugar, salt, and spices in a small bowl; whisk together.
Place egg white in a large bowl; stir with a whisk until foamy (be sure the bowl is completely clean as if you were making a meringue). Add the almonds, cashews, and pumpkinseeds; toss well to coat. Sprinkle with spice mixture; toss well to coat. Spread nuts in an even layer on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake at 325° for 15 minutes, stirring once. Turn oven off. Remove pan from oven; stir snack mix. Immediately return pan to oven for an additional 15 minutes (leave oven off). Remove pan from oven and place on a wire rack; cool completely.
Mix together the nuts, cranberries, and chocolate chips once the nuts have cooled completely. Store trail mix in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.
The nut portion of the recipe comes from Cooking Light.