There’s a nip in the air here in Delhi, announcing the Festival Season. All over the city, gift boxes are being busily packed. The most popular among these are boxes containing an assortment of walnuts, almonds, cashew nuts, raisins, and the tiny but tasty and nutrient-dense pine nut.
November to January is the only time I get to eat pine nuts, because here in India we don’t make pesto often, and don’t really use pine nuts in cooking. But recently, an early gift box gave me the pleasure of shelling and enjoying them raw, and I still have a big handful of them in my pantry, so I decided to explore their health benefits and ideas on how to use them.
Here’s a glance at what I found:
1. Pine nuts are rich in Vitamins A and lutein, both of which are known to support sharper vision.
2. They contain heart-friendly monounsaturated fat.
3. Pine nuts build stronger bones, thanks to their Vitamin D content.
4. They boost immunity, because they’re rich in Vitamin C.
5. Pine nuts contain pinoleic acid, which makes you feel fuller faster, and thus aids in weight loss.
6. They are a good source of iron, which is good news for the circulatory and nervous system.
7. The little nut fights free radicals, thus giving Father Time a run for his money.
8. The protein and magnesium in pine nuts makes them an excellent source of energy, so whenever you’re feeling tired, pop a few and feel like new!
Now that I’m convinced of their healing power, I need some good ideas on what to do with pine nuts. Pesto and salad I have tried. What else can I do to harness their goodness? Do write in with your suggestions; I’d love to hear them!