Toasting nuts makes them crunchier and intensifies their flavor. In the case of thin-skinned nuts like hazelnuts or peanuts, it also makes removing their skins easier.
To toast a small amount: Place nuts in a small frying pan over medium-high heat and cook, stirring frequently, until they smell fragrant and turn a light shade of golden brown (they will continue to toast a bit more when removed from heat).
To toast larger batches: Spread the nuts in a single layer in a shallow baking pan and toast in a 375° oven for 10 to 15 minutes until the nuts are lightly browned and smell rich and toasty.
- To skin nuts after toasting: Place them in a kitchen towel and rub vigorously. Most of the skins will fall right off. Don't worry if a few bits still cling here and there; they won't harm the flavor or texture.