If you need to flag this entry as abusive, The best recipes, kitchen tips and genius food facts. But the first mention of the Brazil nuts from Western sources goes back to 1569 during a time when Spanish and Portuguese explorers were tramping through South America, fighting, killing, and subjugating native peoples. Plus: This Rio Restaurant Feeds the Homeless, but Soup Kitchen It Is Not. All rights reserved. How long do shelled Brazil nuts last when stored in the freezer? Shelled Brazil nuts can be thawed and refrozen repeatedly during the freezer time shown without any significant loss of flavor or texture. Can Coffee Grounds Repel Mosquitoes? Raw Brazil Nuts contain a variety of potent antioxidants. Place the Brazil nuts in a pot of cool water and bring it to a boil. One of the toughest nuts to crack, Brazill nuts are protected by a thick, tough brown shell. Turns out the Brazil nut is not actually a nut, and more of them are harvested in Bolivia than Brazil. depends to a large extent on storage conditions -because of their high oil content, Brazil nuts must be stored properly to avoid becoming rancid. Part of HuffPost Food & Drink. Lay a kitchen towel on a cutting board to keep the nut from slipping as you hit the nut with the hammer repeatedly until it cracks. Brazil nuts have been eaten by the native people of the region at least since the Upper Paleolithic era, some 11,000 years ago. In fact, they're more closely related to blueberries and persimmons than they are to walnuts or pecans. So I decided to look into the nut that bears the South American country's name. You can insert your fingertip in this expanded opening to pull the shell completely away from the nut. Drain the hot water and immediately plunge the hot, boiled Brazil nuts in a bowl of very cold water or ice water to soak for about 2 minutes. Today, nearly half the Brazil nuts imported to the United States come from Bolivia. Sources: For details about data sources used for food storage information, please click here. Rancid Brazil nuts will often develop a bitter, unpleasant taste; if Brazil nuts develop an off odor or taste, or if mold appears, they should be discarded. To maximize the shelf life of shelled Brazil nuts, store in cool, dry area; after opening the package, place the Brazil nuts in a sealed airtight container or place original package in a resealable heavy-duty freezer bag. ©2020 Verizon Media. A nut, by definition, is a hard-shelled fruit with a single seed. To further extend the shelf life of shelled Brazil nuts, the Brazil nuts may be stored in the fridge or freezer; place Brazil nuts in a sealed airtight container or place original package in a resealable heavy-duty freezer bag. It's a dangerous profession since each pod weigh up to five-and-a-half pounds and drop without warning from trees the height of an 18-story high-rise building. Do not eat Brazil nuts with a meat color other than creamy white because the nuts could have grown mold. In particular, they have a high level of vitamin E. Nuts contains Selenium, an element that makes the nutritional value of Brazil nuts stand out. (We hope the harvesters wear helmets.). Contributors control their own work and posted freely to our site. If you look at a Brazil nut from one end, it is vaguely triangular in shape. Brazil nuts offer a creamy texture and sweet taste that delight the senses while supplying an invaluable source of nutrition. While there are some plantations, most of the production comes from harvesting the pods in the wild, which takes place from December to March. Brazil Nuts and Selenium Poisoning But, strangely, it was Dutch traders who first introduced the food to Europe in the early 1600s, although it would take another hundred years or so before they became popular there. Even the way in which the trees are pollinated is a bit odd. Making Stovetop-Toasted Nuts Pour 1 cup (133 g) of Brazil nuts into a dry skillet. Insert the nut in a nutcracker or a simple pair of pliers. Turns Out Brazil Nuts Aren't Nuts. Brazil nuts derive their name from their host tree, the Brazil tree. Lay a kitchen towel on a cutting board to keep the nut from slipping as you hit the nut with the hammer repeatedly until it cracks. In the absence of a nutcracker or pair of pliers, you can use a hammer to crack the Brazil nut shell. There's only one insect for job, the orchid bee, which is big enough, strong enough, and has a long-enough tongue to pry the flower's hood open and lap up the nectar within. Wedge a nut pick in the crack and pull back on the handle, using leverage to pry up a bit of the shell. How to tell if shelled Brazil nuts are bad? The process is most efficient when you crack open several Brazil nuts at once, particularly if you choose to soak, freeze or roast the nuts before opening. More from Modern Farmer: Meet a Woman Who Keeps 500 Plants in Her Brooklyn Apartment Why You Should Never Buy a Teacup Pig This Guy's Going to Paddle an 800-Pound Pumpkin--For a World Record & a Good Cause Wait a Second. Photo courtesy of USDA Forest service via Wikimedia Commons. Brazil Nuts, in particular, contain large amounts of palmitoleic and … You might need to reposition the nut and squeeze the nutcracker in a few different places before the shell actually cracks. Set a large skillet … Strike the hammer as softly as possible to crack the shell without crushing the shell pieces and the nut inside. Fresh, Local, On-Demand, and Cheap: A Brazilian Recipe for Change, Reporting from Rio: Q&A with Chef Rafa Costa e Silva, This Rio Restaurant Feeds the Homeless, but Soup Kitchen It Is Not, Meet a Woman Who Keeps 500 Plants in Her Brooklyn Apartment, This Guy's Going to Paddle an 800-Pound Pumpkin--For a World Record & a Good Cause. Each shell conceals a smooth, sweet snack that provides the perfect treat to eat while you’re relaxing at home. Line up the Brazil nut so the straight side rests in the grooves of the nutcracker or pliers, rather than the angled sides of the nut. Brazil nuts first arrived in America in the early 1800s, and as in Europe, it took some time before they reached the kind of popularity that would land them in those ubiquitous tins of mixed nuts you find on your grocery store shelf. The pods are extremely tough--so much so, there are only two animals that can open them: us, though we need the help of an ax or machete; and a small rodent called an agouti, who gnaw the pods with their chisel-like teeth. That was pretty much the best thing that happened to Maldonado and his troops on that trip: their boats overturned navigating a swollen river, a bloody battle ensued with rival Spaniards who were also exploring the area, followed by another battle with natives that wiped out most of the rest of the crew. One of these explorers, a Spanish conquistador named Juan Álvarez Maldonado, was introduced to Brazil nuts while exploring the Madre de Dios river region of Peru and promptly ordered that thousands be gathered for his hungry troops. The freezer time shown is for best quality only - foods kept constantly frozen at 0°F will keep safe indefinitely. This post was published on the now-closed HuffPost Contributor platform. © Copyright 2020 StillTasty LLC. Actually, there's a lot about Brazil nuts that's, well, kinda nuts. The pods hurtle toward the earth at 50 miles per hour with such force they can drive themselves deep into the ground. So I decided to look into the nut that bears the South American country's name.