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well-being properties and variety of the most popular dried fruit – Italian Cuisine

They are a healthy snack, with or without shell, and become an ally for a healthy break. Science has confirmed this for a long time nuts and the walnuts in particular they are beneficial to health. Eat three nuts a day it is good for the heart, it reduces the incidence of cardiovascular diseases and cholesterol, thanks to the presence of "good" omega3, omega 6 and arginine fats. They are also an important source of antioxidants due to the presence of vitamin E, but also B1 and B6. In short, walnuts are authentic superfood, a panacea for our well-being.

Among the best-selling nuts

171820Walnuts are the best-selling nuts in Italy, and according to the latest report by Nucis Italia, an association of the main companies in the sector, it is estimated a consumption of about 50 thousand tons, practically a tenth of the European one.

Of Persian origins, walnut has been cultivated in Italy since Roman times, but production has suffered a certain decline over time. In recent years, given the decidedly growing consumption trend, attention has also returned to those Italian regions traditionally suited to this production, including Campania, Lazio, Veneto and Emilia Romagna and the Nuts are on the rise again.

Meanwhile, new varieties of nuts from different parts of the world have also become part of our usual consumption, helping to raise world production. Some are better known both in Italy and in Europe, other varieties begin to appear on our markets only recently, but we are talking about quality and rich in nutrients.

Nuts from the world

171823The pecan nuts, originating in the southern United States and Mexico, they have a rich and buttery taste that makes them one of the favorite ingredients in the kitchen and pastry of the United States. Pecan nuts production is expected to increase by 10% compared to last year, which is important for understanding market trends.

The macadamia nuts, coming from Australia, have a sweet and delicate taste, are rich in minerals, vitamins and monounsaturated fatty acids and therefore with multiple beneficial properties. But, look at the calories of these oil seeds. They are quite widespread and the total yields of macadamia nuts even increase by 19%.

The Brazil nuts, very famous, arrive directly from the heart of Amazonia. Rich in selenium, a powerful antioxidant, they have a flavor that is very reminiscent of coconut. They are to be consumed without excess, as it is a very caloric food. Among the many benefits are the thyroid, mood, digestion and the immune system.

Lesser-known varieties

171829The red walnuts, similar in every way to the common walnut, differ in the red kernel. The taste is delicate and very oily, they are the result of a natural cross between the common walnut and Persian walnut. It is a particularly rare variety and therefore also with a rather high cost on the market.

The Mongongo nuts, sweet and nutritious, they are a precious and widespread fruit in Namibia and in south-western Africa where they are a food very consumed by the local population. A precious oil for cosmetic use is also extracted from these nuts.

The Kemiri nuts, or candle nuts, a variety native to Indonesia, rich in oils, is widely used both in cosmetics and in local cuisine. The large amount of oil present in these nuts allows it to be used as candles (that's why the name nuts candle).

Mariacristina Coppeto
March 2019

Photo credits: Pixabay

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A thousand dollars for the most stinking fruit in the world – Italian Cuisine

So much is the rarer variety of durian, considered a delicacy in much of Southeast Asia. Its price is equivalent to three times the average salary of a local resident

It costs three times the average salary of an Indonesian: the durian, considered the most stinking fruit of the way, in the variety "J-Queen", is sold to one thousand dollars (about 875 euros), in Indonesia. And its stratospheric price is triggering a series of controversies.

This rare variety of durian is sold in a shopping center in Tasikmalaya, west of the island of Java. It is packed in transparent boxes closed with a red satin ribbon and decorated with fake flowers. On the card the price is indicated: about 14 million rupees, when the average monthly salary in Indonesia, according to data from the Ministry of Labor, is about 3.94 million rupees.

Nobody buys it (it seems that only two have been bought, since it is on sale in the Plaza Asia shopping mall), but many locals go to the supermarket just to go a selfie together with the fruit, considered a delicacy in much of Southeast Asia.

The expensive "J-Queen" variety was developed by a 32-year-old Indonesian psychologist, Aka, who claims to have created a new and rare version of the durian crossing two superior varieties from different regions of Indonesia.

The "J-Queen" tree, he says, bears fruit only once every three years and its durians have a "taste of butter and peanuts". They are not oblong in shape, like the most common varieties, but round and golden yellow. "My intention was to improve the living conditions of farmers, creating top-level durians," Aka told the Indonesian news site Tribunnews, before revealing to have durian crops throughout Java. "I have it in Kendal, Pekalongan, Banyumas, Pangandaran and Gunung Tanjung, Manonjaya, Tasikmalaya."

The local farmers, however, say they have never heard of this supposedly unique variety, and confirm that the most rare and top quality Indonesian durians, the Montong and Kumbokarno varieties, they are normally sold for around 200,000 rupees, around 12.5 euros. Which for a fruit is not so bad.