How to choose, how to store, how to cook, and what are its benefits



Walnuts are one of the most complex and interesting nuts. Due to its lack of sweetness, bitterness, astringency, and other aspects of taste, it turns out to be a versatile product that works equally well with poultry, herbs, cheese, vegetables, and desserts.


We decided to study this product from all sides, for which we turned to a technologist, nutritionist, and chef from Moscow. Here are their answers.


How do you choose walnuts?

If you buy a peeled nut from the market, it would be nice to try it on a large scale. There is no other way to detect its bitterness and moldy taste. Bitterness does not harm a person in any way, it is simply unpleasant, but if there are mold toxins inside the nut, it is It's no longer very good.


If you bought a nut in the shell, study it carefully. The walnuts should be free of spots, dots, and white blooms. All this may indicate that mold or other microflora has begun to develop on the inside: it will somehow appear on the outside. Also, the nut should be held in the hand: it should be concrete by its weight, and not empty. And also try to annoy them: if there is a nut rattling, then the nut inside has dried up, most likely from old age. And if there is no rattle, then most likely inside it is a small, juicy, heavy, juicy nut.


Walnuts are sold in stores in small bags of 100, 150, or 250 grams. You can't taste it, but you can see it through the transparent packaging. There should be no condensation, the nuts should be intact and even less rotten. Crumbs at the bottom of the package may indicate inaccurate transportation and storage, as well as aging: the nut may simply dry out and begin to crumble since old age. So try to find a bag with little or no crumbs.

How are walnuts stored?

Peeled walnuts should be stored for no more than a month to prevent the oils they contain from spoiling. To store walnuts, you need a dry, well-ventilated environment without fluctuations in humidity and temperature so that condensation does not form. For example, this could be glassware Sealed tightly folded in a well-ventilated cupboard or refrigerator. But by no means polyethylene, the nut will quickly suffocate in it.


Shell nuts can be stored for up to two years. A well-ventilated space is also useful for them, but it is not at all necessary to hide it in the dark, the shell will reliably protect the nut oil from exposure to light. It can be stored in the same jar or glass box.


What are the benefits of walnuts?

There are many vitamins and microelements in walnuts. For example, it contains selenium and zinc, which are essential for normal hair growth. Oftentimes, hair loss is caused by a deficiency of these particular elements. But I will make a reservation right away: before solving this problem with the help of walnuts, I still advise you to first visit a doctor and pass the appropriate tests.


Walnuts contain a lot of manganese and copper. Manganese is very important for us, it is necessary for the normal functioning of the nervous system - it participates in the transmission of nerve impulses, copper is responsible for the formation of collagen, helps the gland with absorption into the blood.


Also in walnuts, there are B vitamins, which are also involved in the formation of the nervous system. Choline is a very important substance that normalizes the level of lipids in the blood and prevents the development of atherosclerosis. Potassium, which regulates the work of the cardiovascular system. Magnesium, which is important for both the nervous and cardiovascular systems. There is calcium and phosphorous, which are responsible for the formation of bones, and there is iron, which is necessary for people prone to anemia. Silicon and manganese predominate in walnuts: 50-70 grams of walnuts will cover the body's daily need for these substances.


There are not many other elements in walnuts. It is not recommended to try to compensate for the lack of minerals and vitamins only with nuts, because by increasing their volume in the diet, it is easy to exceed the permissible calorie content per day. Walnuts contain 650 calories per 100 grams of the product. This equates to roughly three servings of meat or one hamburger with fried cutlets. The bulk of the calories in nuts are fat: 95% of the calories are from fat. But nuts are also high in protein: there are 15 grams per 100 grams of the product. This is a good protein indicator.


Walnuts also contain a high level of essential amino acids, those that the human body cannot manufacture on its own and must be found somewhere. These amino acids are involved in all metabolic processes - in the construction of muscle tissue, in the synthesis of hormones, etc.


What is the harm of walnuts?

Walnuts, as I said, are rich in copper, so they are not recommended for people with Wilson-Konovalov disease. This happens when copper accumulates in the body due to genetic disorders.


You have to be careful with the sizes. If you suddenly decide to include them in your daily diet and at the same time do not limit yourself to one or two nuts, you will have to revise the entire diet, otherwise, there is a chance of gaining weight.


Finally, it is important to remind you that nuts are an allergen product. Therefore, it is not recommended to give it to children under the age of three, and older children are advised to introduce this product carefully and gradually. On the other hand, adults should remember that in addition to allergies to the nut itself, cross-allergies can occur (read more about this here).


How many nuts can you eat in a day?

“A person who does not have contraindications is recommended to eat 30, maximum 50 grams of nuts during the day, no more. At the same time, you can also eat other nuts, the main thing is to monitor the calorie content of the diet. Remember that individual consumption of any nuts in quantities Too large can lead to intestinal obstruction, sometimes resulting in surgical intervention.


How do you cook with walnuts?

Walnuts have a wide flavor and go with many things. For example, with aged cheese, crab, beef, and spices like curry and masala with sweet tomatoes. Walnuts pair well with wild rice and soy sprouts, as well as watercress.


I like to use candied walnuts in my salad. Take 70 grams of green apple, 70 grams of celery stalk, 70 grams of lettuce, 50 grams of green grapes, and 30 grams of walnuts. Melt the brown sugar in a pan until caramelized, add the nuts, quickly glaze, remove and set aside to cool.


Peel the celery and cucumber, remove the apple core, remove the peel from the grapes. Finely chop the celery, cucumber, and apple on a mandolin. Then dip the celery in ice water to curl it up, and sprinkle the apples with lemon juice so they don't darken.


Then mix all the ingredients, put chopped walnuts in half and fill the sauce made from fresh apple juice. Take 50 grams of apple juice, add a few drops of citric acid, remove the foam and whisk with half a teaspoon of flower honey. Then add a few drops of walnut oil there, whisk them, and get a pale yellow sauce. The proportions of the dressing can be changed as desired.


You can make pesto with walnuts - like the classic kind, but instead of pine nuts, take walnuts. You can add some other nuts, for example, cashews, to save money. Only then should the cashews be fried first to get rid of the excess oil. All nuts should be grated with basil, add a little garlic and fresh lemon juice.


You can make a nutty dressing for any vegetable salad. Mix about 10 grams of black balsamic vinegar with 5 grams of mustard. Once the vinegar and mustard have combined, add 50-70 grams of toasted nuts, depending on the thickness you want. Mix the mixer again and pour 100-120 ml of soy milk in a thin stream. Add 1-2 pitted dates. Whisk again and add a little chilled grape seed or walnut oil at the end. This sauce is ideal for vegetable salads and salads with grains such as quinoa and wheat. Tabbouleh can be made with beans, legumes, and seasonal fruits such as figs.


Walnuts can be added to creamy pumpkin soup: make the usual pumpkin soup, in which, before serving, add baked and finely chopped walnuts, garlic, and any herbs.


If you want to make a candy out of walnuts, the easiest way is to make bars or candy from raw food dough. Take a handful of walnuts and a handful of dates, about 30-40 grams of cocoa powder. Put it all in a blender, put it in molds, and wash it with cocoa powder or matcha powder.


Of course, truffles are made from walnuts. For 100 grams of walnuts, you need 30 grams of Jerusalem artichoke syrup and 20 grams of coconut or butter for stability. Also mix everything, shape it and pour it over the melted chocolate.


Why are walnuts bitter?

Usually, people think that only old nuts are bitter. In fact, this is not the case. Young nuts can also taste bitter. There are several reasons for this. First, very young and immature nuts, which are previously harvested, are bitter. This happens because they do not have time to form a number of substances responsible for taste. Walnuts are not tomatoes, they do not ripen on the windowsill.


secondly, just in time and freshly harvested nuts, as well as stale nuts, may begin to taste bitter due to improper transportation or storage, for example, if these are nuts that have been peeled and exposed to light for a long time or have been in conditions of high humidity for a long time, That is why they are contained in them, the oil can quickly spoil.


How to get rid of bitterness from walnuts?

There are many folkways to rid acorns of bitterness: you can soak them overnight in ice water or pour boiling water over them for half an hour, after piercing the nuts with a needle. But, if the bitterness does not go away after soaking, then it is better not to eat such nuts.

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