Nuts add good flavor to food. If you toast them in a dry skillet over medium heat for 3 – 5 minutes (until you can smell them and they are golden), shake the pan like you would for popcorn. Be careful and don’t burn them, you just want lightly toasted. Toasting them in a 350 F oven about 10 minutes will give you a more even color, but you have to wait to heat up the oven first.
Toasting, you will get flavor that is more pronounced and fresher tasting.
Note: Freeze nuts that are not being used as they will go rancid fairly fast.
Ideas: Sprinkle lightly toasted nuts, such as pine nuts on a spinach salad or pecans on a green salad or a chicken salad or walnuts in a fruit salad are wonderful. Try sliced almonds sprinkled over fish, chicken or green beans as this is tasty. Grind toasted almonds to use like a flour for breaded fish or chicken or pork chops. Try coating a piece of fish or chicken with finely chopped macadamia nuts, for a buttery, breaded taste.
Cook slow so you don’t burn them. Nuts tend to burn easy because of their oils. These tips are easy, flavorful and remember the oil in nuts are good for the heart.