Cashew nuts – among all the variety of nuts, this type of nut stands out for its extraordinary arched configuration and a pleasant sweetish taste. These fruits that grow in Brazil are interesting from a botanical point of view. In fact, the fruits of the cashew plant are not what we see in the store. This is a real full-fledged fruit with pulp and core, and not ordinary nuts with shell and core.
The peduncle is round, apple-like in shape and has a bright red or orange color and juicy, appetizing pulp. However, the fruit plucked from the bush deteriorates within a day, it is for this banal reason that Ukrainians do not even have the opportunity to see it.
Those who live in the South American continent or visit Brazil can taste these amazing-tasting fruits and the many products made from cashew pulp: preserves, jams, alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks. Cashews can be harvested annually up to 25,000 tons.
In the middle of the juicy pulp is a nut. Nuts are reliably protected by a strong shell from a poisonous layer located between the edible pulp and the heart of the fruit. This layer is literally saturated with burning oil that can harm the skin of a person.
When cutting cashews by hand, you can get burned, but cashews cannot be poisoned: the nuts are first fried in the shell, which leads to the evaporation of the poisonous oil, and then peeled. Therefore, cashews are always sold peeled.
Cashew oil has also found a use: now it has begun to be used in the woodworking industry, impregnation with such oil protects wooden surfaces from rotting and premature destruction.
Cashew nuts composition
Similar to its counterparts, cashews also contain a huge number of substances useful for the human body. Slightly buttery but incredibly tender, cashews are lower in fat than nuts like almonds or walnuts. But there is even more protein, carbohydrates, and other important substances in cashew nuts.
Cashews contain all subspecies of B vitamins, vitamins PP, E, iron, selenium, potassium, many other important trace elements, as well as Omega-3, which makes these nuts a source of most vital substances.
- Caloric value 600 kcal 39.04%
- Proteins 18.5 g
- Fat 48.5 g
- Carbohydrates 22.5 g
- Dietary fiber 2 g
- Water 5 g
Cashew nuts history
Tropical Brazil is considered the birthplace of exotic cashew nut. The Chikuna Indians ate the bark, leaves and yellow fruits of the tree. During the harvest, the settlers even waged “akaia wars” as cashews were a very valuable product. There were times when a person received a fine for cutting down a tree.
Until now, the world’s largest cashew plantations are located in Brazil. But the main supplier of this nut to the world market is Vietnam, India and Nigeria.
By the way, the name of the nut comes from the Greek word kardia, which means heart. This is the name of the apple (false fruit), where the nut is located. It resembles an irregular heart shape.
The benefits of cashew nuts
To date, the benefits and harms of cashews have been thoroughly studied by doctors and scientists, now these nuts occupy a worthy place among many other products used in various spheres and areas of our life.
Cashew nuts are especially revered by dentists. So, experts from Japan have found special substances in the kernels of this type of nuts that can suppress the growth of harmful microorganisms that cause caries.
African healers apply cashew powder to patients suffering from gum disease or toothache. In Ukraine, dentists also recommend using these nuts for the treatment and prevention of various diseases.
The presence of vitamin E in nuts makes cashews an excellent aphrodisiac, increasing potency and positively affecting the reproductive function of the body of men and women.
Has been used successfully in treating skin problems. Dermatologists recommend eating these nuts for eczema, psoriasis patients, suffering from various problems caused by metabolic disorders. It is possible to eliminate cracks, papillomas, warts or symptoms of dermatitis by using a decoction from a nutshell.
It is these nuts that help patients to strengthen the immune system, are able to normalize such indicators as sugar and cholesterol levels, cure asthma, bronchitis, stop the development of an infectious disease, get rid of dysentery, intestinal disorders, and strengthen blood vessels. Due to its antiseptic, antibacterial, tonic and other unique properties, cashew nuts will bring considerable benefit to almost any ailment.
Cashews are hypoallergenic, they can be eaten by anyone who loves such a treat and wants to get the maximum benefits from the properties and composition of the nuts. This is a favorite product of nutritionists who recommend using nuts for weight gain in anorexia, and these nuts will also be useful in trying to lose excess pounds.
These nuts were not spared by the cosmetic industry. Cashew oil today can be seen in many skin and hair care products: creams, masks, balms. Skin areas affected by hot sunlight can be easily relieved of redness by means of a mixture where you need to add nut and rose oil (you can replace with geranium or lavender) in the amount of: 1 tablespoon + 2-3 drops, respectively.
Cashews are considered an excellent addition to various salads, all kinds of sauces, pastries, soups, and side dishes. The oil obtained from this type of nuts adds brighter and more original notes to the product than peanut or any vegetable oil.
This plant can even be used as an antidote for snake bites. For example, Indians use the husks from the kernels of nuts, make a decoction from their shells to neutralize the deadly poison of the cobra. The drugs made from cashew nuts are taken orally, applied externally in small doses.
Cashew nuts can cause individual intolerance. Therefore, the first time you need to try it in small portions – 1-2 nuts. Also, don’t overuse raw cashews. It’s high in fat, which will do more harm than good. Better to eat roasted cashews.
How to choose cashews nuts
You can buy these nuts at Yammi. It should be noted that cashews are often offered in salted and toasted form, nuts in a chocolate and honey shell are also on sale, all these processing options slightly increase the calorie content of nuts. It is worth remembering that in any finished form, nuts will bring more benefits if you choose between them and chips or popcorn.
If you decide to purchase regular fresh nuts, then the only advice here is to choose nuts with whole kernels. Shredded cashews are stored less and spoil faster.
Cashew storage methods
The purchased nuts must be stored taking into account their characteristics, then they will delight you for a long time with their invariably delicate taste, provide you with all the useful, vital elements that this variety of nuts is rich in.
It is strongly discouraged to store cashews in warm places – at a sufficiently high temperature, bitterness accumulates in their kernels, and after a while the nuts can become not only tasteless, but also inedible. The best option is to put them in the refrigerator: in the freezer or refrigerator.
These nuts can be stored frozen for a whole year, in a refrigerator for 2-5 months. But if you do not want to set aside a place for nuts in the refrigerator, then put the purchased nuts in a small container, close the lid and put it in a place where there is no high humidity and is cool enough. This way the nuts can be stored for about one month.
The use of Cashew nuts in medicine
Cashews have anti-diabetic properties, lower blood sugar and prevent diabetes complications. Reduces inflammatory reactions. Cashews are beneficial for atherosclerosis. It contains a lot of magnesium, which relaxes blood vessels, understands pressure. As well as cashew almonds, it affects the respiratory system. We remove PMS in women.
Copper improves the condition of the skin, in particular the collagen (skin skeleton). Has a beneficial effect on hair, nails. Cashews are most often sold roasted. Since the layer itself between the shell and the core, it is very poisonous. But heat treatment removes the possible negative effects of these toxins.
The use of cashews in cooking
Cashews are used to make oil, which is added to salads, soups, side dishes, and so on. It gives the dishes an original tart taste and aroma.
Whole nuts are added to Asian and Indian dishes as an additive or as a stand-alone ingredient. Cashews are mixed with other nuts, and the healthy mixture is recommended for a snack on the road or at work.
Light cashew brownie
This vegan treat is prepared without an oven. Nut-fruit cake is useful for athletes and those who follow a diet. It turns out delicious and nutritious.
- Dried apricots – 100 grams
- Dates – 100 grams
- Cashews – 100 grams
- Sesame seeds – 100 grams
- Light raisins – 70 grams
Brown the cashews in the oven and grind to flour in a blender. Soak raisins, dates (pitted) and dried apricots in warm water for 20 minutes. Then add dried fruits to cashews and bring to a homogeneous mass in a blender. Blind balls, and roll them in toasted sesame seeds.