The pistachio nut is definitely a favourite in most households. They make for an amazing snack with a very satisfying and entertaining crack to have at this yummy nutritional nugget.
It’s even called the “happy nut” or “smiling nut” in certain countries. This is most probably because it adds a beautifully fresh and happy look to food, has a unique flavour and is a powerhouse of nutrients.
Health benefits of the perfect pistachio
1. Your family-favourite is high in dietary fibre. This helps to keep your gut healthy.
2. They are high in monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFA’s) which contributes to the maintenance of normal blood cholesterol levels.
3. They are high in copper as well as other essential vitamins and minerals such as B6, thiamine and phosphorus. Copper aids in the formation of bone. It also contributes to the normal functioning of the immune system and the nervous system.
4. These nutritional nuggets are naturally cholesterol-free, they contain only 1.5g of saturated fat per serving.
5. Pistachios are included in the protein group, according to the USDA, My Plate. A serving of 28.35 grams has a whopping 6 grams of protein.
* Your recommended serving size of pistachio nuts is 28.35g, which amounts to 49 pistachio kernels.
Did you know?
- Pistachios are not actually nuts, they are the seeds of the pistachio tree.
- Pistachio shells split on their own once the fruit is ripe, exposing the delicious green seed.
- These globules of goodness get their bright green colour from the natural plant pigment, chlorophyll. Chlorophyll absorbs light to provide energy for photosynthesis.
- Chlorophyll occurs naturally in green fruit and vegetables and has been said to have many health benefits. For example increased energy, gut health and anti-ageing properties.
- Montagu’s Pistachio nuts are imported from the USA.
5 Yummy ways with the perfect pistachio
- Pistachios can be added to any granola bar or biscuit for a different look and taste.
- Add crushed pistachios to vanilla ice cream for homemade pistachio ice cream.
- Make your own pistachio flour, by grinding the nuts and use it as a replacement in baking for a creative green cake or yummy cake base.
- Grind pistachios with a little olive oil, avocado, lime juice, salt and pepper to make a delicious tortilla dip.
- Add them to vegetable & fruit salads.
And just in case you are not yet convinced that these nuts are the best things since sliced bread…
5 Things to do with pistachio shells
There’s a therapeutic thing about cracking open pistachio shells. But what do you do with all those left over shells?
Here are some fun ideas:
Get creative – There are numerous creative ideas of arts and crafts that you can make with your kids or on your own with pistachio shells.
Pot plant drainage – Pistachios hard and make great additions to pot plants to increase drainage in the pots.
Smoking meat – Being naturally high in oils these little shells love smoking, which makes them a great addition to any meat and fish smoker.
Ground cover – Pistachio shells are great to use as a grown cover to reduce water absorption by the sun.
Bean bags – Pistachio shells are perfect to fill both large and small bean bags. So get cracking (pun intended) and make fun bean bags for you and the kids to play with.