MAKES ABOUT 2 CUPS • PREP TIME: 5 minutes • COOK TIME: 30 minutes
This one reminded me of how Edison must’ve felt inventing the lightbulb: it took a lot of tries, but once I hit on the right formula, shazam! I knew we had a winner when I walked into my husband’s office, brittle in hand. He was so deep in thought at his computer screen that he didn’t even see me. I just said, “Gregg . . . open mouth.” In went the brittle, his eyes still glued to the screen. “Gregg . . . close mouth. Chew.” I was halfway down the hall when I finally heard his voice echo off the walls: “This is REALLY good!” And so it is, for the tongue and for the brain. The sesame seeds are full of zinc, the pumpkin seeds are like little mini antidepressants, and the sunflower seeds are loaded with vitamin E, which helps memory, learning, and overall mood.
1 cup raw pumpkin seeds
3/4 cup raw sunflower seeds
1/4 cup white or black sesame seeds
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/3 cup Grade A Dark Amber maple syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat the oven to 325°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a large bowl, combine the pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds, cinnamon, ginger, allspice, and salt, then add the maple syrup and vanilla and mix until well coated.
Spoon the mixture onto the prepared baking sheet and, with a spatula or a piece of parchment paper, pat and press the brittle into an even layer about ⅛ inch thick. Press out the middle so it’s slightly thinner than the edges, which will help prevent the outside edges from burning.
Bake for about 30 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely. As it cools it will become crispy. Once the brittle has crisped up, break it into pieces.
Cooks's Notes: If you have a small rolling pin—or a wine bottle for that matter—place a piece of parchment paper on top of the brittle mixture and use the rolling pin to create a nice even surface. Warning! Sneaking a taste right out of the oven may burn your tongue.
If the brittle doesn’t become crispy after it has cooled, put it back in the oven and bake for 8 to 10 minutes more.
Reprinted with permission from The Healthy Mind Cookbook Copyright © 2015 by Rebecca Katz with Mat Edelson, Ten Speed Press, a division of the Crown Publishing Group, Berkeley, CA.