Skin the nuts by pouring hot water over them and leaving them for a few minutes until the skins can be rubbed off. Dry carefully, and spread the nuts on a baking sheet. Brown, but do not over-brown, in a moderate oven 350°F, 180°C, gas mark 4. Put the sugar and water into a thick pan and put over a low heat. When it begins to boil, add the nuts. Boil hard until the syrup becomes pale brown, stirring well. Take off the heat. Add a few drops of almond essence and stir well. Put tablespoons of the mixture on to an oiled tin to set.