Cashew Nuts

Many people bracket nuts into one category, and assume they’re all of similar nutritional value. Nuts are actually remarkable different, containing different types and levels of oils. Did you ever wonder why you never see a cashew nut in a shell? A colleague of mine loves to shell his own nuts, and is probably itching to get his hands on the cashew. Itching is probably the right word, as cashew shells are toxic, containing the same element as found in poison ivy. Painful skin rashes are not uncommon in processing workers, as the double shell is difficult to remove.

The cashew nut is actually a seed, and the ‘raw’ nut also isn’t quite what it seems, being slightly cooked. This heating process is necessary in order to remove the shell. Cashews are a tropical plant, originally from Brazil, although most cashews worldwide are now grown now in India. In South Africa, cashews grow mostly close the Mozambican border. The organic cashews offered by the co-op come from Sri Lanka. Also part of the cashew plant is the cashew apple, but these highly perishable fruit are extremely rare, and certainly wouldn’t have survived the heat of Thursday, the hottest day of the summer.

To order, head on over to www.ethical.org.za.

The Co-op team.