- The Washington Times - Tuesday, May 8, 2007

Moms are wonderful, sharing people. They’d give you the last of the pint of Ben & Jerry’s they tucked in the back of the freezer if they knew you wanted it.

Mothers deserve — or really, really need — treats as well. When mothers are at risk for not having those goodies available when the craving hits, well, it’s not pretty.

Perhaps that’s why savvy mothers often resort to secret stashes of their favorite foods. Maybe you’ve even witnessed the sight of mom rummaging around the back of the cupboard frantically looking for the candy bar hidden in an empty pasta box.

You don’t want to turn mom into that kind of hoarder, do you?

This year, make a wonderful snack or sweet that’s just for mom on Mother’s Day, and don’t even hint that you want a taste.

My suggestion is candied sliced almonds. You won’t find this in stores, but it’s easy to make from scratch. The almonds are delicious eaten alone or as a topping to ice cream or frozen yogurt or over fruit salad.

The recipe yields a heaping cup. Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the front of the freezer where mom can find them, or use the almonds for a strawberry frozen yogurt dessert mom just may share.

Candied almonds

1 large egg white

1 teaspoon light rum

2½ tablespoons sugar

1/8 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

1/8 teaspoon ground ginger

11/4 cups sliced raw almonds

Beat the egg white until frothy in a medium-size bowl. Stir in the rum, sugar, salt, cinnamon and ginger. Stir in the almonds and mix gently to coat with egg white mixture.

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Spread the almonds on the paper in a single layer. Bake in a preheated 225-degree oven for 40 minutes, stirring halfway through. Remove from oven and let almonds cool on the baking sheet. When cool, remove from paper and break into bite-size pieces. Makes 4 or 5 servings.

Frozen yogurt with strawberry and candied almond topping

1 cup sliced fresh strawberries

2 tablespoons dark rum or an almond-flavored liqueur

1 tablespoon brown sugar

1 cup frozen vanilla yogurt

3 tablespoons candied sliced almonds

Place strawberries in a small bowl. Add rum and brown sugar. Stir well and set aside for 15 minutes for flavors to blend. Spoon half of the strawberries with some of the rum into 2 tall glasses. Top each with half the frozen yogurt. Top with remaining strawberries and any remaining rum. Sprinkle 1½ tablespoons almonds over each serving. Serve immediately to 2.

Bev Bennett is the author of “30-Minute Meals for Dummies” (John Wiley & Sons Inc.).

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