Tag Archives: nuts

Boiled Peanuts – a southern U.S. specialty


Boiled Peanuts

I was first initiated into this redneck snack when moving to Tallahassee, Florida for University. I was abhorred by the idea, but fighting resistance of trying things odd, I came to love them. They are very popular in any region where peanuts are found to grow. It is the practice of boiling green and raw peanuts, rather than fully mature nuts. They are not fully dried as is done with roasted peanuts or those for oil, butter, etc. They are boiled in salt or cajun flavoring, and develop a strong salty taste with a consistency that is very soft very similar to peas. You can find them being hawked on the roadside by vendors when driving down country roads in the southern United States. This became a folk food in the southern USA, and were called “goober peas” since the 19th century. Some believe they were brought by African slaves and were prepared liek a fish fry in a social gathering setting, often accompanying fried green potatoes, fried fish, okra, black eyed peas, collard greens, and barbecque or cajun food. They can also be found as street foods and snacks in Indian, Indonesia, the Phillipines, Thailand, Central and South America, Nigeria and Ghana, as well as many other parts of Africa. In China they are boiled with salt and star anise, and made into a soup in Taiwan. They are known to contain antioxidants and therefore very good for you – with over four times the antioxidants of raw or roasted peanuts.


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Macadamia : Macadamia spp.

Macadamian Nut Tree between Punalu’u and Kona

Taxonomy: Kingdom: Plantae; (unranked): Angiosperms; unranked): Eudicots; Order: Proteales; Family: Proteaceae; Genus: Macadamia; Species: various – some examples: Macadamia claudiensis, Macadamia grandis, Macadamia hildebrandii, Macadamia integrifolia Macadamia jansenii Macadamia ternifolia, Macadamia tetraphylla, Macadamia whelanii, Macadamia neurophylla, etc. Common names: Macadamia Nut, Bush Nut, Maroochi Nut, Queent of Nuts, Bauple Nut, Gyndl, Jindilli, Boombera, Macadamia, Australian nut, Queensland Nut.

One of the world’s most popular nuts, and prized in its incorporation with chocolate, it is most referred to as the nut of the Macadamie tree of the same name, from a variety of species under the Genus Macadamia of the Proteaceae family. The name of the tree and nut comes from being dedicated to the famous colleague “John Macadam” of botanist Ferdinand von Mueller who named the plant. Its a flowering tree that births a very hard nut. The trees are small to large evergreens that can grow to a height of 2-12 meters. Its leaves are arranged in whorls of 3-6 with lanceolate, obovate, or elliptical shapes, depending on the species. The leaves can grow to 6-30 cm long and 2-13 cm broad with an entire or spiny-serrated margin. The flowers produced by the tree come from long slendor simple racemes sprouting to 5-30 cm long with individual flowers from 10-15 mm long ranging in color from pink to purple and possessing 4 tepals. The fruit or seed is a very hard woody globose follicle with a pointed apex containing one or two seeds (the actual nut).

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