Rosemary Olive Oil Marcona Almonds

Marcona almonds are to Spain what San Marzano tomatoes are to Italy, and what Turkish apricots are to Turkey. They’re one of Spain’s best food products and I have seen them explode across the US in the past few years.

If you’ve never had a marcona almond before, they’re more flavorful, a little sweeter, and have a different kind of crunch to them than conventional almonds. The crunch has more of a macadamia nut-like texture to it, and they’re easily my favorite nut.

Rosemary Marcona Almonds @fifteenspatulas

When I first arrived in Spain four years ago to study abroad for 4 months, the first thing my host mom did was hand me a paper napkin cradling a small handful of Marcona almonds freshly toasted in Spanish olive oil, and sprinkled with sea salt.

My first thought was, uh…are these almonds? What’s up with these rounded chubby almonds?! That was the first time I discovered Marconas, and I fell in love with them. If you see them at your grocery store (I get mine at Whole Foods), snatch them up and make this recipe. You’ll love them toasted in rosemary olive oil!

To start, add some extra virgin olive oil to a skillet:

Olive Oil Marcona Almonds

Just enough to coat the bottom. Then add a sprig of fresh rosemary:

Rosemary Olive Oil Marcona Almonds

Dump in enough Marcona almonds to form a single layer, and place the skillet over medium low heat for about 15 minutes.

What are Marcona almonds?

When you take them off the heat, they should be golden brown and toasted, and the olive oil should be bubbling:

Olive Oil Toasted Marcona Almonds

Remove the toasted almonds with a slotted spoon and toss them with crunchy sea salt and minced rosemary:

Marcona Almonds

Enjoy! And by the way, the leftover rosemary infused olive oil is wonderful to use for cooking vegetables or chicken.

Rosemary Olive Oil Marcona Almonds

Ingredients:

  • extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup marcona almonds, raw
  • 1 or 2 rosemary sprigs
  • crunchy coarse sea salt, for sprinkling

Directions:

  1. Pour enough olive oil to coat the bottom of a skillet, and add a rosemary sprig to the oil. Add the marcona almonds to the oil, and make sure they are all in a single layer in the oil.
  2. Place the skillet over medium low heat for 10 minutes, then give it a stir. The almonds should be starting to turn golden brown. Cook for an additional five minutes, stirring halfway through, then remove the almonds with a slotted spoon. Toss the almonds with a good pinch of crunchy sea salt, and if desired, you can mince some rosemary leaves and toss them with the almonds for extra rosemary flavor. Let the almonds cool, then serve and enjoy!
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