Monday 17 October 2011

Nuts and Bolts

When it came to entertaining, my folks knew how to live it up. They’d dust off the half-empty bottles of Captain Morgan Rum and Canadian Club, bring out the Petro Canada 1984 Olympic tumblers, push a “Country Gold” 8-track tape into the stereo and let the good times roll, baby.

A heaping bowl of homemade Nuts and Bolts is as essential to caker parties as a shrimp ring, forced laughter and the cloying smell of Charlie perfume. But be warned: this recipe makes a lot. Like, a bucket. So unless you want to be like me and find yourself three pounds heavier in a week's time, I’d hold off making it until you’re entertaining a crowd.

2 cups oil (see note)
2 packages onion soup mix
1 tablespoon garlic salt (No Frills didn’t have any, so I went with garlic powder)
1 box Crispix
¾ box Cheerios
1 large bag hickory sticks (or 3 small bags)
1 can mixed nuts
1 large bag pretzels (I bought the twisted, but recommend the sticks)

Heat oven to 250°. Mix all ingredients well in a large roaster. Bake for 2 ½ hours, stirring every ½ hour. Cool.

Note: I mixed the oil, soup mix and garlic powder together first, then poured it over the mixture. This seemed like an easy way to distribute.

Source: With Hearts that Care and Hands that Serve, Outlook and District Volunteer Services, Outlook, Saskatchewan


  1. Two cups of oil? Holy cow! Yeah, that's a lot of nuts & bolts, but a pint of oil?
    OMG I'll bet it's delicious.
    What are Hickory Sticks?

  2. What's a hickory stick?

  3. First off, my sympathies to my American readers. You folks have never encountered the deliciousness of a Hickory Stick. How to sum them up?

    Well, they're like matchsticks made out of potatoes and lightly seasoned. And they come in a bag that has a faux wood panel design on it. They're made by Hostess, which I don't think you have in the U.S.

    A quick check on the U.S. Walmart site pulled up Allens Butterfield: Shoestring Potato Sticks which would be a suitable substitute.

    As far as the 2 cups of oil go, I like to think it burns off during the 2.5 hours in the oven. That's my theory and I'm sticking to it.

    1. A more suitable and closer substitute would be any brand of Potato Sticks, BBQ flavour. A web search brings up French's and Utz and Wise and Pik-Nik brands, as well as a couple of Kosher brands that would be available in regions of the U.S.

      Also, if Crispix is not available in your area, Rice and Corn Chex cereal is an appropriate substitute.

    2. You forgot to mention the burnt flavour you get with every Hickory Stick.

    3. And how it manages to linger on your fingertips for days afterward.

  4. Ah! The tiny french fries. My brother loved those as a kid.

  5. we make ours with a pound of butter, which I don't think is any healthier. But just as delicious.

  6. Hi Kirsten. You're right in that the butter wouldn't be any healthier, but I can't help but thinking it would be tastier than using oil. I'll have to try it next time I'm in need of another weight gain.

  7. I will dig out the recipe for you, it's normally reserved for Christmas. There is worcesticire (or however you spell it) and celery salt! delicious.

  8. Dad still makes nuts and bolts every Christmas - two ice cream buckets of it! Now, if he'd only remember I'm allergic to nuts...

  9. I think most parents have selective memories.

  10. OMG it’s like you stepped into my parents house, complete with the country music and Charlie perfume!