Stove Top Method
Heat a frying pan on high heat. Add the nuts to cover pan in one layer. With your hands, sprinkle with a couple of tablespoons of water and cook until they begin to pop. Remove from heat and let nuts cool on a tray. For salted nuts, add a few tablespoons of salted water-about ½ teaspoon salt per tablespoon of water-when the nuts begin to pop. Cook until dry and the nuts pop again. Remove and cool.
Preheat oven to 350°F. Spread nuts evenly on a foil-covered baking sheet and roast for 10 minutes or so, until they begin to pop. As they pop, stir them and cook another minute or two. Remove from oven and cool. For salted nuts, dissolve 1 teaspoon salt with 3 tablespoons water, and mix with nuts before baking. Nuts will pop once they dry out. Stir them at this point and bake another minute or two. Remove from oven and cool.
To Open the Nuts
Spread nuts on a wooden cutting board. With a rubber mallet or a meat mallet, chop the nuts with quick, careful blows, being careful to do it lightly enough not to crush the nut inside the shell.
Or, place nuts on a tea towel on the counter in a single layer. Cover with another tea towel, and continue as above to crush them with quick, light blows. The shells will stick to the towel, making nut removal easier.
About this recipe
Adapted from wholesalepinenuts.com.