Walnuts: Born in the USA

Ingredient
January 11, 2013

About half the world's supply of healthy walnuts comes from California.

closeup_arugula_salad_with_dried_cherries
Mark Boughton/styling: Teresa Blackburn
http://pgoarelish2.files.wordpress.com/2011/12/closeup_arugula_salad_with_dried_cherries.jpg

While our reliance on foreign oil and tainted Chinese imports has been much in the news, there’s a foreign dependence on an American product that has gone under the radar—a product so important that Spanish tapas, French salads and Italian cakes might not survive without it. It’s walnuts—and about half the world’s supply comes from California. In addition to being tasty, they’re a mother lode of omega-3 fats, of which there are two kinds: the long-chain kind found primarily in fish (like salmon) and the short-chain kind found primarily in nuts and seeds. The degree to which omega-3s fight cancer, heart disease, cognitive degeneration and other health problems is still being studied, but most experts agree that both kinds are beneficial.

But you don’t eat health claims, you eat food. Don’t think omega-3s. Think flavor and crunch. Toss walnuts in a salad. Sprinkle them on cereal. Add them to a stir-fry. Try them in cakes and cookies.

By Tamar Haspel

Mahammar

Mahammar (Pepper, Pomegranate and Walnut Dip)

A seasonal Mediterranean dip that's a healthy holiday treat.

Slicing-Brussels-Sprouts.jpg

Brussels Sprout Salad with Parmesan and Walnuts

Thinly sliced Brussels sprouts make a terrific slaw.

closeup_arugula_salad_with_dried_cherries

Arugula Salad with Walnuts, Dried Cherries and Feta

This salad is the ultimate in flavor contrast—peppery arugula, crunchy walnuts, tart cherries and creamy feta cheese.

chocolate-walnut-cake-white-chocolate-cream-cheese-frost-ice-dessert-thanksgiving-gluten-flour-free-brandywine-inn-holiday-relish

Chocolate Walnut Cream Cake

With ground almonds and walnuts and breadcrumbs instead of flour, this cake is topped with a luscious buttercream frosting. Use gluten-free bread for a gluten-free cake.