Hazelnuts: The Nutritional Powerhouse That Tastes Amazing!
Hazelnuts, also known as filberts, are short, round nuts with a rich, buttery taste and a crunchy texture. They are packed with nutrients and a great addition to a healthy diet.
What are Hazelnuts?
They are the fruit of the hazel tree, native to Europe, Asia, and North America. British, Roman, and Greek spread it across Europe. They are small, round nuts encased in a tough, fibrous shell.
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The nuts have a rich, buttery flavor and a crunchy texture, making them a popular snack food. They are also used in various culinary applications, including baking, cooking, and roasting.
The Nutritional Benefits of Hazelnuts
Hazelnuts are packed with nutrients that are essential for a healthy diet. They are an excellent source of monounsaturated fat, which has resulted in better health and helped reduce the likely risk of heart disease. They also contain a high amount of dietary fiber, which can help handle digestion and also helps to prevent constipation. Also, hazelnuts are a good source of protein, minerals, vitamins, and vitamin E, which act like antioxidants, and B6 for normal brain development and a healthy nervous system, magnesium, and potassium.
How to Incorporate Hazelnuts into Your Diet
You can add them to your diet in many ways. One of the best ways is to add them to your favorite dessert and curry recipes, such as baked goods, cakes, cookies, granola, laddu, barfi, ice creams, curries, or trail mix.
It can also be eaten as a snack, roasted or raw. You can add it to your salads, milkshakes, or smoothies to boost flavor and nutrition.
Hazelnut butter is another delicious option. It can be spread on toast, roti, and chapati or used in baking and cooking for your fussy eaters.
Hazelnuts in Baking
They are a popular nutty ingredient in cooking and baking and for a good reason! They add a rich, nutty flavor to baked goods and can be used in various recipes, including cookies, cakes, laddus, and bread. They are also often used in chocolate confections, such as Nutella, truffles, and bars.
In India, some diabetic patients use them by chopping them or ground into a meal and use them as a substitute for flour in gluten-free baking. Some people add them to Roti flour.
Hazelnuts in Milkshake
They are used in a milkshake. You can add this as a nutritional shake with a nutty taste. You can add Vanilla ice cream, some saffron strands for a taste, milk cream, and some ice cubes. You can make the mixture and even keep it for ice cream.
Hazelnuts in Cooking
These amazing tasty nuts can also be used in cooking to add flavor and nutrition to dishes. They can be roasted and added to pasta or grain-based dishes, such as risotto or pilaf. Hazelnuts can also be used to make a rich, nutty sauce that can be used as a topping for vegetables, meats, or fish. These nuts can also be used in savory dishes, such as sauces, stuffing in Gujia, laddus with other nuts, chocolates, and pesto.
Hazelnuts and the Environment
Hazel trees are hardy and can grow in various soils and climates. They are not only good for your health but also healthy and tasty for the environment. They require little water and pesticides, and they provide a habitat for wildlife. They are nowadays also cultivated in Jammu, Kashmir, Ladakh, and some parts of the Himalayas are also a sustainable crop, as the trees can produce nuts for many years.
The shells can be used for fuel or compost. Some are even researching it for cosmetics as the shell contains Vitamin E.
Hazelnuts are a delicious and nutritious addition to any diet. They contain monounsaturated fat, fiber, protein, vitamins, and minerals. They can be incorporated into your diet, including snacking, baking, and cooking.