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Nutopia News 'N More

Check out our selection of nuts from right here in Oklahoma!!!

 Nutopia News 'N More 
Saturday, June 08 2013

Here’s something quick and easy that you can bring to the next lunch together. This salad tastes good, is packed full of nutritious nuts and is not too filling. Light and cooling, it’s the perfect side dish for a meal in the sun.

 

Ingredients:

Lettuce/Mixed Greens

Cashews, Walnuts, Sunflower Seeds

Cucumber Yogurt Dressing

Parmesan Cheese

Step 1) Roast sunflower seeds and cashews in a pan, spray with PAM spray and season with salt and garlic powder. This step is optional, I do it to add more flavor. If you want to create this salad quicker, you can just add the nuts without this step. 

Step 2) Chop walnuts and put on top of lettuce, along with other nuts.

Step 3) Drizzle with Cucumber Yogurt Dressing – recipe below - and sprinkle parmesan cheese.

 

 

 

Cucumber Yogurt Dressing:

 

Grated cucumber (about 1 cup)

 

¾ cup plain nonfat yogurt

 

1 tbsp balsamic vinegar

 

Black pepper, salt

 

Italian seasoning

 

Step 1) Put all ingredients into a blender and blend for 1 – 2 minutes.

Step 2) Refrigerate for 5 – 10 minutes.

 

- 200 cal - This depends on the quantity of nuts you use. 

 

*NOTE: Use unsalted nuts for this recipe; this is what makes it healthy.

 

For more recipes like this, please visit the source of this recipe at http://muffintopcop.wordpress.com/2011/05/27/summer-nut-salad/

Posted by: Nutopia News N' More AT 09:46 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Friday, May 10 2013

Boiled peanuts are popular in some places where peanuts are common. Fully mature peanuts do not make good quality boiled peanuts; rather raw or "green" ones are used. "Raw" denotes peanuts in a semi-mature state, having achieved full size, but not being fully dried, as would be needed for roasting or peanut butter use. After boiling in salt water they take on a strong salty taste and become softer with the length of cooking, somewhat resembling a pea or bean, to which they are related. The most flavorful peanuts for boiling are the Valencia type. These are preferred in the United States, being grown in gardens and small patches throughout the South. Green Virginia-type peanuts are also sometimes used.

 

Preparation:

Raw peanuts and Green peanuts are generally used for boiled peanuts. A green peanut is a term to describe farm fresh harvested peanuts that have not been dehydrated. They are available from grocery stores, food distributors and farmers markets, during the growing season. "Raw" peanuts are also uncooked but have been dried/dehydrated and must be rehydrated before boiling (usually in a bowl full of water overnight). Once rehydrated, the raw peanuts are ready to be boiled. NOTE: Roasted peanuts have already been cooked and should not be boiled.[3]

Raw peanuts in the shell are put in a large pot of very heavily salted water and boiled. This can be done inside on the stove or outside on a propane burner or fire pit for a larger volume. Depending on the locality, some cooks use rock salt or standard table salt, or both. The boil can go on from four to seven hours or more, depending on quantity and the age of the peanut (green peanuts cook faster and tend to be better tasting), and the boilings will most often be of several gallons of water. Flavorings such as ham hocks, hot sauce, Cajun seasonings or beer can be added to the boil. An alternative method for dried raw mature peanuts is to re-hydrate them by soaking overnight in water, after which they can be cooked in the conventional manner.

The resulting food is a very soft peanut in the shell, invariably quite salty. The softened peanuts are easy to open. Often small, immature peanuts (called "pops") are included, which have even softer shells and can be eaten in entirety. These tend to absorb more salt than the larger ones. Some aficionados of the food prefer them cooked for a shorter period of time so that the nut is not quite so soft.

The process of boiling peanuts also draws antioxidants from the shells. The boiled peanuts have four times the antioxidants of raw or roasted peanuts.

Uneaten peanuts should be stored in a refrigerator, as they can become slimy or moldy quite quickly without refrigeration. Boiled peanuts can be frozen, and later reheated in a microwave or boiling water for out of season consumption. Properly frozen, the flavor is well maintained for even several years.
Boiled peanuts can also be canned, and are available commercially. Because peanuts are a low-acid food, they can be canned in a pressure canner.

For more information on this topic, visit the source of this article at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boiled_peanuts

 

Posted by: Nutopia News N' More AT 12:09 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Tuesday, April 09 2013

Yes, you read that right. Candy. Can be good for you. I think I’ve died and gone to heaven. Especially since Cadbury Eggs are popping up everywhere I look! Some candy has been shown to have serious health benefits such as preventing disease and weight gain. There is one small, little catch: As they always say, enjoy in moderation. Read on to discover how you can enjoy sweet treats, sans the guilt!

Choose Daily Dark Chocolate…
A new study backs up the best excuse ever to indulge your PMS craving: People who ate a little chocolate every day were 40 percent less likely to have a heart attack or stroke, according to the study in the European Heart Journal. Pick a piece of dark chocolate the size of a Hershey's Kiss.

…Or Whatever Indulgence You Want.
Fans of fruity candy, rejoice! People who eat confections of any kind have a lower body-mass index and a smaller waist than their candy-skipping pals, researchers at Louisiana State University find. Balancing healthy eating with the occasional treat is key.

Get Gummy
Chewing gum improves alertness, a study from Coventry University reveals. Pop a piece when you’re studying for that final or you need an afternoon pick-me-up.

Have a Ball
The corn in that sticky popcorn ball has fiber and antioxidants. Microwave 1/2 cup honey for 10 seconds and add 12 ounces semisweet chocolate chips. Pour over 6 cups popcorn mixed with 1 cup salted peanuts. Stir. Form into balls and chill on wax paper until firm.

Do Dessert
A sweet truth: Enjoying more treats can help you slim. People who ate four low-calorie desserts a week lost 9 pounds more than those who had one weekly splurge, research from the University School of Medicine in Athens shows. Those who felt deprived pigged out, but frequent sweets eaters were satisfied with smaller portions.

Downsize It
People given halved candies ate 60 fewer calories than those offered the same amount of whole ones, the Journal of the American Dietetic Association reports. Small-sweets eaters considered quantity, not size, and stopped sooner. This works for other treats, too, so slice before snacking.

For more information on this topic, visit the source of this article at http://girlsguideto.com/articles/6-ways-candy-can-be-good-for-you

Posted by: Nutopia News N' More AT 09:56 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Monday, April 01 2013

(NaturalNews) Eating a couple of handfuls of walnuts a day can improve the health of sperm, according to new research just published in the medical journal Biology of Reproduction.

According to the study, sperm shape, movement and overall vitality improved in men who added walnuts to their diets over the course of 12 weeks, the BBC said in detailing the study's findings.

Fatty acids found in walnuts are believed to have aided in sperm development, the study said, though it wasn't clear if they contributed to improving male fertility. About one in six couples are infertile, according to separate research, with 40 percent of those due to a male deficiency.

"It would be relatively easy to poke fun at studies like this, but there is increasing evidence to show that aspects of a man's diet can affect the number and quality of sperm produced by his testicles," said Dr. Allan Pacey, senior lecturer in andrology at the University of Sheffield in England, told the BBC.

Scientists said the next step in researching the findings would be to work with couples who are currently attending fertility clinics, to see if placing men with fertility issues or those with poor semen qualities, into a walnut-enriched diet would result in high conception rates.

No fooling - Walnuts

The study by UCLA's Fielding School of Public Heath involved 117 men between the ages of 21 and 35 who were divided into two groups. One of the groups added 2.6 ounces of whole-shelled walnuts to their daily diets, while members of the second group continued their same diet but avoided tree nuts.

Both groups ate typical Western-style fare.

"We found a significant improvement in sperm parameters in the group that consumed the walnuts," said Prof. Wendie Robbins, lead author on the study. "The men who ate no tree nuts saw no change."

Robbins added that sperm quality improved overall, in terms of concentration, shape, vitality and chromosome abnormalities.

"The study has been well executed and my only criticism would be that the men in the walnut-eating arm of the trial could have altered other aspects of their behavior to give the results shown in the paper," Pacey said.

"A better trial would be to produce tablets of walnut extract that looked identical to a placebo so that the study was completely blind," he continued. "In spite of this, the results of the study show a small but statistically significant improvement in sperm health."

Researchers believe the fatty acids in the nuts were largely responsible for the positive results.

"Walnuts provide a particularly rich source of a-linolenic acid, a natural plant source of omega-3, which we suspect may have been responsible for the improvements we observed," said co-author Catherine Carpenter, from the UCLA Center for Human Nutrition.

The study was funded by the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health's Center for Occupational Environmental Health, and it utilized walnuts from the California Walnut Commission, the BBC noted.

Earlier studies contain similar results

Earlier studies have noted that diet can affect sperm count.

For instance, one study of 99 men who were patients at a fertility clinic in the U.S. found that higher consumption of so-called "junk food" can lower sperm quality, while increased consumption of Omega-3 fatty acids improved quality.

"The magnitude of the association is quite dramatic and provides further support for the health efforts to limit consumption of saturated fat given their relation with other health outcomes such as cardiovascular disease," said Prof. Jill Attaman from Harvard Medical School in Boston, who led the study, the results of which were published the journal Human Reproduction.

Men who had higher fat intakes had a 43 percent lower sperm count and 38 percent lower sperm concentration, compared to men who ate the least junk-food fat, the study found.

To learn more visit the source of this article at: http://www.naturalnews.com/036919_walnuts_sperm_health_healthy_oils.html#ixzz2PEMF1hQG

Posted by: Nutopia News N' More AT 11:00 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Sunday, March 10 2013
The cashew tree is native to Brazil’s Amazon rain forest, which spread all over the world by Portuguese explorers. Today, it is cultivated commercially in Brazil, Vietnam, and India and in many African countries.

Cashew tree bears numerous, edible, pear shaped false fruits or “accessory fruits'” called "cashew apples." A small bean shaped, grey color “true-fruit” is firmly adhering to lower end of these cashew-apples appearing like a clapper in the bell. Botanically, this “true fruit” is a drupe, featuring hard outer shell enclosing a single edible seed or the “cashew nut.” The exterior shell composes a phenolic resin, urushiol, which is a potent caustic skin irritant toxin. In the processing units, this outer shell is roasted in order to destroy the urushiol resin, and then; the edible cashew kernel is extracted.

Cashew nut measures about an inch in length and 1/2 inches in diameter with kidney or bean shape, and smooth curvy pointed tip. Each nut has two equal halves as in legumes. The nuts are cream white color with the firm yet delicate texture and smooth surface. Cashews have buttery texture with a pleasant sweet fruity aroma.


Health benefits of Cashew nuts

  • Cashews are high in calories. 100 g of nuts provide 553 calories. They are packed with soluble dietary fiber, vitamins, minerals and numerous health-promoting phyto-chemicals that help protect from diseases and cancers.

  • They are rich in “heart-friendly” monounsaturated-fatty acids like oleic, and palmitoleic acids. These essential fatty acids help lower harmful LDL-cholesterol while increasing good HDL cholesterol. Research studies suggest that Mediterranean diet, which is rich in monounsaturated fatty acids help to prevent coronary artery disease and strokes by favoring healthy blood lipid profile.

  • Cashew nuts are very rich source of essential minerals. Minerals, especially manganese, potassium, copper, iron, magnesium, zinc and selenium are concentrated in these nuts. A handful of cashew nuts a day in the diet would provide enough of these minerals and prevent deficiency diseases. Selenium is an important micronutrient, which functions as a co-factor for antioxidant enzymes such as Glutathione peroxidases, one of the most powerful antioxidants in the body. Copper is a cofactor for many vital enzymes, including cytochrome c-oxidase and superoxide dismutase (other minerals function as co-factors for this enzyme are manganese and zinc). Zinc is a co-factor in many enzymes that regulategrowth and development, sperm generation, digestion and nucleic acid synthesis.

  • Cashews are also rich in many essential vitamins such as pantothenic acid (vitamin B5), pyridoxine (vitamin B-6), riboflavin, and thiamin (vitamin B-1). 100 g nuts provide 0.147 mg or 32% of daily-recommended levels of pyridoxine. Pyridoxine reduces the risk of homocystinuria, and sideroblastic anemia. Niacin helps prevent "pellagra" or dermatitis. Additionally, these vitamins are essential for metabolism of protein, fat, and carbohydrates at cellular levels.

  • Further, the nuts are also containing a small amount of zea-xanthin, an important pigment flavonoid antioxidant, which selectively absorbed into the retinal macula lutea in the eyes. It is thought to provide antioxidant and protective UV ray filtering functions and helps prevent age-related macular degeneration (ARMD) in the elderly.



See the table below for in depth analysis of nutrients:

Cashew nut (Anacardium occidentale),
Nutrition value per 100 g. 
(Source: USDA National Nutrient data base)
Principle Nutrient Value Percentage of RDA
Energy 553 Kcal 28%
Carbohydrates 30.19 g 23%
Protein 18.22 g 32.5%
Total Fat 43.85 g 146%
Cholesterol 0 mg 0%
Dietary Fiber 3.3 g 8.5%
Vitamins    
Folates 25 µg 6%
Niacin 1.062 mg 6.5%
Pantothenic acid 0.864 mg 17%
Pyridoxine 0.417 mg 32%
Riboflavin 0.058 mg 4.5%
Thiamin 0.423 mg 35%
Vitamin A 0 IU 0%
Vitamin C 0.5 mg 1%
Vitamin E 5.31 mg 35%
Vitamin K 4.1 µg 3%
Electrolytes    
Sodium 12 mg 1%
Potassium 660 mg 14%
Minerals    
Calcium 37 mg 4%
Copper 2.195 mg 244%
Iron 6.68 mg 83.5%
Magnesium 292 mg 73%
Manganese 1.655 mg 72%
Phosphorus 593 mg 85%
Selenium 19.9 µg 36%
Zinc 5.78 mg 52.5%
Phyto-nutrients    
Carotene-β 0 µg --
Crypto-xanthin-β 0 µg --
Lutein-zeaxanthin 22 µg --

Selection and storage

Cashew nuts are available in the market year round. In the stores, only shelled cashew kernels are sold since the shell contains phenolic resin, urushiol, which is a potent skin irritant toxin.

Different forms of cashews are available; raw, salted, sweetened or ground...etc. Buy shelled nuts that are bright cream-white in color, compact, uniform in size and feel heavy in hand. They should be free from cracks, mold, and spots and free of rancid smell.

Store shelled nuts inside an airtight container and keep in the refrigerator in order to avoid them turn rancid. Under ideal conditions, fresh nuts should last for 5-6 months.























Culinary uses

Here are some serving tips:

cashew nut fried rice pineapple cashew quinoa stir-fry
Cashew nut fried rice with brussel sprouts and tomato.
(Photo: by waldopics)
Pineapple-cashew nut-quinoa stir-fry.
Photo courtesy: rusvaplauke
  • Cashews are eaten as a snack either on its own, salted or sweetened.

  • Cashews are nutty yet pleasantly sweet in taste. They are relished as a garnish in sweets and desserts.

  • Cashews, along with almonds and other dry fruits are being used in various rice dishes hyderbadi-biriyani, rice-pulao...etc, and in curry (kaaju-shahi-paneer) preparations in Indian, Pakistani, and Middle-Eastern regions.

  • Split or crushed cashew along with almonds, pistachio is often sprinkled over desserts, particularly sundaes, and other confectionary to enhance the flavor.

  • The nuts are widely used in confectionery, as an addition to biscuits, sweets and cakes.

  • "Cashew apples" are among popular fruits; eaten on their own in many regions around the world. They are also being used to prepare healthy drinks.


Safety profile

Cashew nut allergy is a common hypersensitivity condition in some individuals, especially in children. The reaction symptoms may range from simple skin itching (hives) to severe form anaphylactic manifestations, including breathing difficulty, pain abdomen, vomiting, and diarrhea.

The allergic manifestations are due to chemical compound anacardic acid (urushiol) that is present in cashew apples, shells, and nuts. Cross-reactions also occur with some other nuts and fruits of Anacardiaceae family such as mangopistachio, etc.

Individuals with known allergic reactions to cashew nut and fruit may observe caution while eating them. (Medical disclaimer).


For more information on this topic, visit the source of this article at http://www.nutrition-and-you.com/cashew_nut.html

Posted by: Nutopia News N' More AT 12:04 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Sunday, February 10 2013
 Calling all peanut butter lovers! Here are 10 tummy-pleasing ways to sop up some peanutty decadence. We recommend choosing natural or homemade varieties for the truest flavor and best nutrition.
 
1: Solo
Peanut butter is just so good on it’s own. A light smear on celery sticks, apple slices, or whole grain crackers and you have a heart-healthy and satisfying snack. Sprinkle on some sunflower seeds for crunch or a few raisins for natural sweetness. Each tablespoon has about 110 calories so portion out to keep the calories reasonable. Ever tried making your own nut butters?
RECIPE: Make Your Own Nut Butters
 
2: Energy Bars
Make your own simple and delicious version of an energy bar. Peanut butter acts as the healthy glue to hold them together.
RECIPE: Oatmeal Peanut Butter Energy Bars
 
3: Smoothies
Who needs ice cream when you have the creamy goodness of peanut butter?! Perfect for a post-workout protein boost or breakfast on the go.
RECIPE: Peanut Butter Split Smoothie
 
4:  Stir Fry
Melt a spoonful of PB into stir fried noodles for a silky and flavorful sauce.
RECIPE: Stir Fry Basics
 
5: Salad Dressing
Make a thick and creamy dressing without the unhealthy fats. Toss it up with fresh veggies, cooked chicken and a citrus punch.
RECIPE: Chicken Salad with Peanut-Lime Vinaigrette
 
6: Satay
Grilled chicken, steak, and shrimp love peanut butter too. Combine w 
RECIPE: Chicken Satay with Peanut Sauce
 
7: Yogurt Dip
For another take on dips, mix creamy peanut butter with nonfat Greek yogurt for a light and tangy dipping sauce for strawberries, apple slices, carrot sticks or whole grain pretzels.
 
8: Sweet Treat
If you love peanut butter and chocolate, this is the munchie for you! Try to find banana chips that aren’t fried in oil to save a few calories.
RECIPE: Memphis Banana Bites
 
9: Quick Breakfast
A healthy and satisfying breakfast doesn’t have to be complicated or time consuming – it’s as easy as 3 ingredients.
RECIPE: Peanut Butter & Green Apple Toast
 
10: Soup
Whisk in some peanut butter to soups and stews for a nutty flavor and unbeatable texture. Earthy vegetables like butternut squash and sweet potatoes make the best flavor combos.
RECIPE: Nutty Sweet Potato Soup
 
Read more at: http://blog.foodnetwork.com/healthyeats/2011/03/01/10-ways-to-love-peanut-butter/?oc=linkback
Posted by: Nutopia News N' More AT 06:36 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Thursday, January 03 2013
 Nuts are underrated as nutritious snacks — particularly raw tree nuts, such as almonds, cashews, walnuts, and more, which have been linked to lower cholesterol, better heart health, weight control, and even a lower cancer risk.

 

Unfortunately, too few Americans eat nuts regularly: They account for less than eight percent of daily antioxidant intake. "That may be because people are afraid of the fat and calories in nuts, or they find plain nuts boring,” says Joy Bauer, Today Show nutritionist and bestselling author. “That’s a shame, because a small handful can pack your diet with filling protein, fiber, unsaturated fats, and important vitamins and minerals.” Here’s how your health benefits each time you nosh on a handful of nuts.

 

Walnuts: Inflammation Fighters

In addition to containing the most antioxidants of all nuts, which help protect your body from the cellular damage that contributes to heart disease, cancer, and premature aging, “walnuts are also the richest in omega-3 fatty acids, which fight inflammation,” says Bauer. They’re an especially great way to get these healthy unsaturated fats if you’re not a fan of fish, where these types of fats are predominantly found. A walnut snack may also turn around a bad day during that time of the month: The manganese they contain may reduce PMS symptoms.

 

Serving info: About 14 walnut halves = 185 calories, 18 grams fat

Almonds: Good for Your Gut

Almonds contain the most fiber — about three grams per ounce — compared to other nuts, and are richest in vitamin E, a powerful antioxidant. Almonds may even help you slip into those skinny jeans: In oneInternational Journal of Obesity study, when two groups of obese adults followed low-calorie diets for six months, those who included almonds in their weight loss plans lost more weight than those who ate more complex carbohydrates. Other research shows that almonds are especially healthy for people worried about their blood sugar: Those who ate about 20 percent of their calories from almonds for four months saw their bad LDL cholesterol drop and their insulin resistance decrease compared to a control group who didn’t eat them. Almonds may even safeguard your gut: A test-tube study (funded by the Almond Board of California) found that the nuts raised levels of good bacteria that bolster the body’s immune system.

 

Serving info: About 23 nuts = 170 calories, 15 grams fat

Cashews: Brainpower Boosters

Cashews are particularly rich in iron andzinc. “Iron helps deliver oxygen to all of your cells, which can prevent anemia, and zinc is critical to immune health and healthy vision,” says Bauer. Cashews are also a good source of magnesium: One ounce provides almost 25 percent of your daily need. Magnesium may help improve memory and protect against age-related memory loss, according to a study in the journal Neuron.

 

Serving info: about 18 nuts = 165 calories, 13 grams fat

Pecans: Artery Defenders

Pecans aren’t just for making tasty pies, they can also help improve yourheart health. “Pecans are among the most antioxidant-rich nuts,” says Bauer. “They may help prevent plaque formation in your arteries.” In fact, aJournal of Nutrition study (funded partly by the National Pecan Shellers Association) found that consuming pecans can help lower LDL cholesterol levels by as much as 33 percent. Pecans may also buffer your brain health, according to an animal study from the University of Massachusetts Lowell. The vitamin E found in the nuts could delay progression of degenerative neurological diseases like amyotropic lateral sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease.

 

Serving info: About 18 halves = 200 calories, 21 grams fat

Brazil Nuts: Potent Cancer Protector

Just one Brazil nut packs more than 100 percent of the daily value for the mineral selenium, which may help prevent certaincancers, including bone, prostate, and breast cancer. A recent study in theJournal of Medicinal Food suggests that the selenium found in Brazil nuts, along with soy, may help fight prostate cancer by inhibiting the growth of cancerous cells. However, don’t overdo it on Brazil nuts: High levels of selenium can be harmful, so stick to a serving or less.

 

Serving info: 5 to 6 nuts = 185 cals, 18 grams fat

Macadamia Nuts: The Most MUFAs

Although ounce for ounce they’re one of the most calorie-dense nuts, macadamia nuts contain the greatest amount of heart-healthy monounsaturated fat (MUFA) per serving. “This ‘good fat’ lowers LDL ‘bad’ cholesterol levels and blood pressure,” says Bauer. A Pennsylvania State University study (funded partly by the Hershey Company, which owns the Mauna Loa Macademia company) found that people who added macadamia nuts to their diets reduced their triglyceride levels, total cholesterol, and LDL cholesterol by nearly 10 percent.

 

Serving info: About 10 nuts = 200 cals, 22 grams fat

Pistachios: The Skinniest Nut

Pistachios are the most slimming nuts, with less than four calories each. Their shells make them especially dieting-friendly: “Eating them in the shell automatically slows down your pace so the snack lasts longer and you eat less overall,” says Bauer. They may also help you breathe easier: University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center researchers found that eating two ounces of pistachios daily may reduce lung cancer risk. Pistachios are rich in the antioxidant gamma-tocopherol, a form of cancer-fighting vitamin E. Pistachios are also packed with potassium, a mineral essential for a healthy nervous system and muscles, and are a good source of vitamin B6, which can lift your mood, fortify your immune system, and more.

 

Serving info: About 50 nuts = 160 cals, 14 grams fat

Hazelnuts: More Than Just Coffee Flavoring

An all-around healthy nut, hazelnuts are notable for their high levels of monounsaturated fats, which can improve cardiovascular health and help to manage type 2 diabetes, according to Bauer. They’re also rich in the antioxidant vitamin E, which may prevent cataracts and macular degeneration, maintain healthy skin, and reduce risk of dementia.

 

Serving info: About 21 nuts = 180 cals, 17 grams fat

 

For more information, please visit the source of this article at http://www.everydayhealth.com/diet-and-nutrition/0406/why-you-should-go-nuts-for-nuts.aspx#/slide-1

Posted by: Nutopia News N' More AT 09:12 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Wednesday, December 05 2012
 You will need the half shell of a cracked walnut. You will have to be careful to crack the shell down the middle to use it for your ornament. Take out all the nuts and fiber inside of the shell. (If you feel the nut shell is too small, you can substitute a regular jar lid of any size that is metal. Just make sure there are no sharp edges. The jar lids can be edged with thin ribbon that you can glue on them. You can use plastic lids but they are hard to paint. Use a red one and glue your paper inside. A child can paint or draw a picture in it. You can also put a round picture of your child in them.)

You will need a gold jar of paint. Paint the outside of the nut shell and the edges. You can spray paint them too, but if you hand paint it the shell will be covered better. If you don't want to paint anything on the inside of the nut shell you should paint the inside gold also. You can also use silver paint and silver cord. These can be painted other colors and you can glitter them. The ideas are endless.

You will need gold cording that you can buy in the craft store.

After the painted nut shell is completly dry, use a needle or a sharp item and poke a little hole in the top of the shell. Put the cord through and knot it. You will then be able to hang the ornament.

Now the fun part. You can paint, inside the cupped part of the nut shell with acrylic paint, a little scene if you are talented in that way. You can glue a magazine miniature scene in it if you like.

Buy some miniature deer, angels or whatever strikes your fancy and glue it in the front of the cupped part of the shell. You can find small artificial flowers and glue them on the top of thenut  shell if you like, but they must be very small. If you or your child is talented, you can make miniature characters from fimo clay to glue in the shell. Use your imagination!

When you are done, you will have charming little ornaments that really don't cost a lot to make.

For more information on this topic, visit the source of this article at http://voices.yahoo.com/do-yourself-holiday-christmas-craft-miniature-nut-7319616.html?cat=24

Posted by: Nutopia News N' More AT 10:02 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Sunday, November 11 2012

A wide variety of nuts is sold at holiday time. Fashion them into this charming decoration especially suitable for Thanksgiving.

Materials needed:

  • 1 straw or grapevine wreath form (10 to 12 inches)
  • an assortment of unshelled walnuts, chestnuts, filberts (hazelnuts), almonds, and brazil nuts
  • acrylic varnish
  • brush
  • wire
  • glue gun
  • pine sprigs, ivy, or small grape leaves (optional)
  • ribbon

Directions:

  • To give the wreath a special sheen, paint the filberts and chestnuts with varnish and set them on a wire rack to dry.
  • Attach a loop of wire to the back of the wreath form for hanging it when complete.
  • Glue on the nuts, working slowly around the wreath, making sure they are all secured. Start with the largest nuts—walnuts, chestnuts, and Brazil nuts, and use the smaller filberts and almonds to fill in around them.
  • Using a glue gun, attach the greens or leaves to the wreath form in between the nuts.
  • Tie the ribbon into a bow and secure it to the wreath with glue or wire.


nut wreath

Posted by: Nutopia News N' More AT 08:16 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Monday, September 24 2012
 

Pecans Were Popular From the Start

The history of pecans can be traced back to the 16th century. The only major tree nut that grows naturally in North America, the pecan is considered one of the most valuable North American nut species. The name "pecan" is a Native American word of Algonquin origin that was used to describe "all nuts requiring a stone to crack.” 

Originating in central and eastern North America and the river valleys of Mexico, pecans were widely used by pre-colonial residents. Pecans were favored because they were accessible to waterways, easier to shell than other North American nut species and of course, for their great taste.

Because wild pecans were readily available, many Native American tribes in the U.S. and Mexico used the wild pecan as a major food source during autumn. It is speculated that pecans were used to produce a fermented intoxicating drink called "Powcohicora" (where the word "hickory" comes from).  It also is said that Native Americans first cultivated the pecan tree.

Presidents Washington and Jefferson Loved Pecans, Too!

One of the first known cultivated pecan tree plantings, by Spanish colonists and Franciscans in northern Mexico, appears to have taken place in the late 1600’s or early 1700’s. These plantings are documented to around 1711—about 60 years before the first recorded planting by U.S. colonists.

The first U.S. pecan planting took place in Long Island, NY in 1772. By the late 1700’s, pecans from the northern range reached the English portion of the Atlantic Seaboard and were planted in the gardens of easterners such as George Washington (1775) and Thomas Jefferson (1779). Settlers were also planting pecans in community gardens along the Gulf Coast at this time.

In the late 1770’s, the economic potential of pecans was realized by French and Spanish colonists settling along the Gulf of Mexico. By 1802, the French were exporting pecans to the West Indies—although it is speculated that pecans were exported to the West Indies and Spain earlier by Spanish colonists in northern Mexico. By 1805, advertisements in London said that the pecan was "...a tree meriting attention as a cultivated crop."

The Birth of an Industry

New Orleans, located near the mouth of the Mississippi River, became very important to the marketing of pecans. The city had a natural market as well as an avenue for redistributing pecans to other parts of the U.S. and the world. The New Orleans market gained local interest in planting orchards, which stimulated the adaptation of vegetative propagation techniques and led to the demand for trees that produce superior nuts. 

During the 1700’s and the early 1800’s, the pecan became an item of commerce for the American colonists and the pecan industry was born. (In San Antonio, the wild pecan harvest was more valuable than popular row crops like cotton!) 

Pecan groves (trees established by natural forces) and orchards (trees planted by man) consisted of diverse nuts with various sizes, shapes, shell characteristics, flavor, fruiting ages and ripening dates.  In the midst of this variability, there was the occasional discovery of a wild tree with unusually large, thin-shelled nuts, which were in high demand by customers.

In 1822, Abner Landrum of South Carolina discovered a pecan budding technique, which provided a way to graft plants derived from superior wild selections (or, in other words, to unite with a growing plant by placing in close contact). However, this invention was lost or overlooked until 1876 when an African-American slave gardener from Louisiana (named Antoine) successfully propagated pecans by grafting a superior wild pecan to seedling pecan stocks. Antoine’s clone was named “Centennial” because it won the Best Pecan Exhibited award at the Philadelphia Centennial Exposition in 1876.  His 1876 planting, which eventually became 126 Centennial trees, was the first official planting of improved pecans.

The successful use of grafting techniques led to grafted orchards of superior genotypes and proved to be a milestone for the pecan industry. The adoption of these techniques was slow and had little commercial impact—until the 1880’s when Louisiana and Texas nurserymen learned of pecan grafting and began propagation on a commercial level.

Thus was the start of a booming pecan growing and shelling industry!

A Pecan Timeline

1500’s

  • Native Americans utilized and cultivated wild pecans

1600’s – 1700’s

  • Spanish colonists cultivated orchards (late 1600’s - early 1700’s)
  • English settlers planted pecan trees (1700’s)
  • George Washington planted pecan trees (1775)
  • Thomas Jefferson planted pecan trees (1779)
  • Economic potential for pecans realized (late 1700’s)

1800’s

  • Pecans exported by French to the West Indies (1802)
  • Pecan budding technique discovered (1822)
  • Successful grafting of the pecan tree (1846)
  • First planting of improved pecans (1876)
  • Commercial propagation of pecans begins (1880’s)
Source: Pecan Technology, Edited by Charles R. Santerre

For more information on this topic, please visit the source of this article at  http://www.ilovepecans.org/history.html 
Posted by: Nutopia News N' More AT 05:44 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email

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Nutopia Nuts 'N More/Deer Creek Market

109 W Main Street
Hydro, OK 73048
Phone: 405-663-2330 or 877-IGONUTS (877-446-6887)

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 Nutopia Nuts N' More, formerly Johnson Peanut Company, has been serving Oklahoma and travelers on the historic Route 66 since 1942. In addition to peanuts, cashews, pecans, natural spanish peanut butter, candy and chocolates, we also offer assorted nut gift baskets and a corporate gift giving program. We are located in Hydro, OK but if you are not in the area you may also buy nuts online and experience why people come from all over the world for Nutopia Nuts.

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