In 1999 I participated in a church leaders' trip to the Holy Land sponsored by World Vision. Our days were spent with faith leaders on both sides of the Israeli/Palestinian divide. Zigzagging back and forth, farm to city, Gaza to Jerusalem, Nazareth to Hebron, check point after check point, I found myself dizzied by all I was seeing, hearing, and witnessing. The saving grace of it all was found at the table. Middle Eastern tables are expansive, meals are lengthy, and the welcome warm. Table fellowship offered time for deep conversation spiced with rich discourse, give and take. This saved my soul. Nine Holy Land trips later, I remain convinced that conflicts are best solved around tables of generous hospitality.
This recipe is adapted from the kitchens of Canaan Fair Trade. Find their products at specialty and grocery stores throughout the US and Canada.
- Gather 6 cups of favorite nuts — I like to use about 2 cups pecans, 2 cups walnuts, and a cup of cashews and a cup of almonds
- Mix together ¼ cup pure maple syrup, 2 Tablespoons Canaan Olive Oil, and about 2 Tablespoons Canaan Za’atar (Thyme)
- Crush one sprig fresh rosemary in season and add up to ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- Options: Canaan Pepper-infused Olive Oil adds a spicy complexity; savory and sage are also nice additions.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a bowl, toss all ingredients together.
- Spread nuts on a rimmed baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
- Bake for about 15 minutes stirring nuts occasionally; baking until lightly browned.
- Season with salt and pepper to taste; toss frequently to cool.
Enjoy. Adapt recipe to your taste. Share generously during holidays, conflicts, and any time you wish.