List of culinary nuts

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Mixed nuts in a bowl
A small bowl of mixed nuts
A typical assortment of mixed nuts

Culinary nuts are dry, edible fruits or seeds that usually, but not always, have a high fat content. Nuts are used in a wide variety of edible roles, including in baking, as snacks (either roasted or raw), and as flavoring. In addition to botanical nuts, fruits and seeds that have a similar appearance and culinary role are considered to be culinary nuts.[1] Culinary nuts are divided into fruits or seeds in one of four categories:

Nuts have a rich history as food. For many indigenous peoples of the Americas, a wide variety of nuts, including acorns, American beech, and others, served as a major source of starch and fat over thousands of years.[5] Similarly, a wide variety of nuts have served as food for Indigenous Australians for many centuries.[6] Other culinary nuts, though known from ancient times, have seen dramatic increases in use in modern times. The most striking such example is the peanut. Its usage was popularized by the work of George Washington Carver, who discovered and popularized many applications of the peanut after employing peanut plants for soil amelioration in fields used to grow cotton.[7]

True nuts[edit]

Common hazelnut, as it grows on the tree
The common hazelnut, native to Europe and Western Asia

The following are both culinary and botanical nuts.

Nut-like drupe seeds[edit]

A drupe is a fleshy fruit surrounding a stone, or pit, containing a seed. Some of these seeds are culinary nuts as well.

Smoked almonds, ready for eating
Smoked almonds

Nut-like gymnosperm seeds[edit]

Pine nuts, in the husk, and separated
Pine nuts are edible gymnosperm seeds.

A gymnosperm, from the Greek gymnospermos (γυμνόσπερμος), meaning "naked seed", is a seed that does not have an enclosure. The following gymnosperms are culinary nuts. All but the ginkgo nut are from evergreens.

Nut-like angiosperm seeds[edit]

Macadamia, in the husk
Macadamia nuts are edible angiosperm seeds.

These culinary nuts are seeds contained within a larger fruit.

Production[edit]

2009 world-wide production, in tonnes[69][note 2][note 3]
NutProduction
Coconuts
61,708,358
Peanuts
36,456,791
Cashew nuts
3,350,929
Almonds
2,361,676
Walnuts
2,282,264
Chestnuts
1,408,329
Betel nuts
1,033,691
Hazelnuts
765,666
Pistachios
633,582
Kola nuts
190,431
Brazil nuts
77,088
Other nuts
830,022

Currently roughly a dozen nuts are responsible for the bulk of world-wide nut production. The major nut-producing countries for each of the major commercial nuts are:[71]

International trade in exported edible nuts is substantial. In 2004, for example, exports amounted to $5.2 billion, with 56% of these exports coming from developing countries.[72]

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Not to be confused with peanuts (groundnuts).
  2. ^ Soybeans are not included in this table, since the vast majority of soybean production is not for use as nuts.[70]
  3. ^ One tonne, or metric ton, is 1,000kg.
  4. ^ Macadamia nuts produced in the United States are grown in Hawaii.

References[edit]

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