Mixed Nuts Mole

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Super Bowl parties are the ultimate potluck of snacks. Nestled between bowls of store-bought chips and cheese puffs are homemade nibbles. Guests beam encouraging others to sample their creations, “Did you try that?” The spread is overwhelming, but you must have at least one bite of everything.

I can never decide what to bring, so I end up making multiple contributions to the snack buffet. Soft pretzels & mustard are a fan favorite followed by spicy mixed nuts. This version is inspired by the rich smoky flavor of mole with cocoa powder and cayenne pepper. Served in a vibrant striped bowl, they will be impossible for my fellow partygoers to resist.

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Mixed Nuts Mole
Adapted from Salty Snacks by Cynthia Nims

1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon granulated sugar
3/4 cayenne pepper
3/4 teaspoon garlic powder
3 cups unsalted nuts (peanuts, pecan halves, walnut halves, slivered almonds and or/cashews)
1/2 cup pepitas
2 tablespoons white sesame seeds
2 tablespoons unsalted butter

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Combine the cocoa powder, salt, sugar, cayenne pepper and garlic powder in a small bowl.

In a medium bowl combine the nuts, pepitas and sesame seeds. Toss with melted butter and then add the cocoa mixture stirring to coat evenly.

Spread the nuts on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake for 15-20 minutes stirring halfway through until the nuts are lightly toasted. Allow to cool before serving. Store in an airtight container for up to 1 week.

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