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Nancy in Pátzcuaro

Pine Nut Recipes

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I finally succumbed and bought a package of pine nuts at Costco the other day. The price is enough to induce cardiac arrest, but I'm resigned to it. They are now in the freezer to preserve freshness. I intend to have them around for a long, long time, given that price.

Now that I have a supply, I'm in the market for interesting recipes. If any of you eGulleteers have a favorite use please post them. Bear in mind that I'm in México, in a small city, and availability of unusual ingredients is limited. I have access to a magnificent mercado, but for the most part the produce is commonplace. I'm starting to see much more eggplant, and a couple of stalls have fresh ginger, and the mangos are starting to show up again (thank goodness), but I don't think I'll ever find radicchio or baby bok choy.

Thanks for your help. I'd like to do a dinner party with at least one component using pine nuts.

Nancy in Pátzcuaro

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I like pine nuts in polvoron, that was the traditional way to make polvorones when I lived in Santa Fe. Make sure to make them very small, you get a better yield for your money. It's funny, though, when I first moved to Santa Fe, pine nuts were cheap because there were almost no outside markets to export them to. They'd be piled high, in their shells, in the produce section of the grocery store, alongside onions and potatoes.

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At a local cafe, they make these wonderful pesto mushrooms. They are oven roasted. Instead of the traditional pesto, the pine nuts are coarsely chopped, mixed in with the herbs. Those pine nuts get toasty and nutty, adding so much flavor and texture to the mushrooms.

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Hi, Nancy.

I most recently used pine nuts, toasted as a garnish on Tarta della Nonna.

IMG_3151.JPG

A mutual friend of ours, RG, has a good recipe for pine nut macaroons. It's actually based on almond paste. Another friend of ours had some difficulty making the pine nut cookies.

But, here's the recipe he gave me.

Pignoli Cookies

1 can (10 oz.) Love'n Bake™ Almond Paste

1 1/4 cups sugar

1 teaspoons grated orange rind, optional

¼ teaspoon salt

3 egg whites, more or less as needed

Pignoli (pine nuts)

How to Prepare :

Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Line two or three baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.

Mix the Love'n Bake ™ Almond Paste, sugar, salt and orange rind in a mixer with the paddle attachment on slow speed. Mix long enough to make a smooth, lump-free mixture. Gradually add the egg whites, adding only enough to create a smooth, firm paste.

Drop by full Teaspoons onto parchment-lined cookie sheets. For Pignoli Cookies, drop batter onto pignoli; coat evenly; shape with your fingers and place onto parchment lined-cookie sheets.

Bake the macaroons in the pre-heated oven until lightly brown, about 10 to 12 minutes. Do not over bake.

Cool completely then carefully peel the cookies off the parchment paper.

Store in a covered container.

RG's opinion is that the piñones rosas, grown and harvested in the state of Hidalgo, México, are superior to the Chinese origin ones. There's a chemical involved, I think, whose name I forget, in the Chinese pine nuts.

So far, I haven't found piñones in our city nor in the state capital, but I really haven't searched locally. But I do know of several sources in Mexico City, among them in the Mercado Medellín, Colonia Roma Sur; in the Mercado San Juan de la Calle Pugibet, Centro; and my favorite source; Molinera "El Progreso", Calle Arandas 21 bis, Centro, one plaza and a block northeast of Mercado San Juan. I can't say how much they cost, because I forced myself to ignore the expense.

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Google Braciole. With pine nuts..it's an Italian meat roll.

I don't make mine that way..but have seen others make um with pine nuts and raisins

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In Italian cooking pine nuts are very used in Sicilian cooking: pasta con le sarde, acciughe a beccafico, but also as stuffing in pepper rolls.

Also, it's the same combination you will found in turkish/lebanese cooking in dolma.

Basically you have a base of onion cooked gently until golden, plus some currants, pine nuts lightly toasted, parsley. Sicilian add a little bit of toasted bread crumbs (toast separately in a bit of oil until golden) and also some grated pecorino, you can add this mix for some fish rolls (swordfish, tuna) or open sardines. But works well also with peppers.

Also you can do middle eastern dolmas: onion until slightly golden, toasted pine nuts, currants, some spices like cinnamon, coriander, rice, parsley, dill, mint, cooked with some water al dente and use as filling for leaves. Swiss chards, cabbage.

I also like it a lot in combination with cauliflower, stll with onion and raisins and some herbs.

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Jacques Pepin makes cheese ball appetizers with pignoli nuts. He takes left over cheese(s) such as fontina, camembert, blue or other soft cheese and mixes about a cup of it with 1/2 C. pear or apple and about 1/4 cup dried cranberries and salt and pepper, combines them in a blender then rolls little balls of the mixture in toasted pine nuts.

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on epicurious there is a recipe for a lemon tart with a pine nut crust- which is like a pine nut shortbread.

I make it with meyer lemons when they are in season. Super good

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on epicurious there is a recipe for a lemon tart with a pine nut crust- which is like a pine nut shortbread.

I make it with meyer lemons when they are in season. Super good

Yes, I can second that. I make a tart shell using 50% ground roasted pine nuts and 50% almond meal, and add ground up rosemary through it. Have only used it for lemon tarts so far, but it works beautifully and the rosemary adds a very complimentary note to it. I've wondered if lavender would work as well for something a bit different, but haven't tried it yet.

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The following is great served on top of good hummus....

ground beef or lamb - browned

add onion, garlic, ginger & sautee

add spices - such as - cinnamon, cumin, coriander, chili powder (or add fresh jalapeño)

add PINE NUTS, raisins, and cilantro

salt

I've also made - and I think I found the recipe online - rosemary, pine nut brittle for snacking and on a cheese plate- though this is a very decadent use of Pine Nuts.

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Thanks to all of you for all your good suggestions. I've been very gratified to get so many great ideas.

Since I don't drink red wine--I think the tannins doesn't agree with me--I guess I won't worry about "Pine Mouth," but I should warm my spouse that he's in danger. As far as I know, though, he's never had any reaction.

I especially like the little cheese balls rolled in chopped pine nuts--that's going to show up as an appetizer very soon.

Nancy in Pátzcuaro

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