June 15, 2024

Athens News

News in English from Greece

Why are pistachios sold in shells?

If you’ve ever had this question, now is the time to answer it. Aegina pistachios are one of the most beloved and delicious nuts for many and are in great demand.

In addition to taste, they are highly nutritious, rich in healthy fats (monounsaturated fatty acids), fiber and antioxidants. Research shows that they may help reduce hypertension and develop beneficial bacteria in the intestines. They have even been mentioned as a good food for weight loss because they make you feel full. They also say that the fact that we have to take them out of the shell (“crack the nuts”) reduces consumption.

According to a 2011 study, participants who ate pistachios as a snack and were forced to remove them from the shell consumed 41% less than those who ate them shelled. However, this is certainly not the reason why they are usually sold in shell. To roast and salt nuts such as walnuts and cashews, manufacturers must remove the protective shell. But why, unlike other nuts, does this not happen with pistachios?

About 70–90% of pistachios open spontaneously during ripening. After collection, due to the fact that the shell is slightly open, they can be fried and salted without peeling. Which saves time and money during the production process.

Nuts that are half-opened are always the ripest. And only a small part of the pistachios that do not open on their own go through the appropriate mechanisms to crack them. Although some experts believe that unopened peanuts may be less ripe, there is actually no noticeable difference in taste. After all, by the time they reach your hands, they will most likely already be ripe.

Most shelled pistachios are primarily used in cooking and in the production of products such as pistachio ice cream. Note that adding peanuts to recipes is a big trend in the industry.

Just be careful not to fall into the trap of thinking that shelled pistachios are more expensive because they weigh more. If you pay attention, you will see that shelled nuts are twice as expensive, so don’t buy them.

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