I remember a time, not so long ago, that I thought of Pine Nuts as a Staple. They are so creamy and nutty and delicious that I wanted to put them in every single dish I cooked. There was a time, that they were fairly reasonably priced, and I bought them in bulk regularly.
These days, they are harder to find, and they are much, much more expensive. I am also very conscious about buying organic products, and organic pine nuts are even harder to find and more expensive. But they are so incredibly delectable that I buy them anyways, and treat them as a Splurge Ingredient.
The variety I personally buy are NOW Foods Certified Organic Pine Nuts – 8 oz. You get 8 ounces of pure magic for anywhere from $15 – $25, depending on availability.
As a splurge item, my favourite way to use them is to toast them lightly in a frying pan – no oil needed – and use them as a topping on just about anything. If I have a meal that is not really screaming at me “Delicious! Eat Me!” then I’ll add a sprinkling of pine nuts and all of a sudden it is a masterpiece. It really doesn’t matter what you put them on – pastas, salads, even ice cream. I’m not kidding. The little gems can be the secret ingredient in just about any ho-hum dish.
If you think you will squeeze your pennies a little bit tighter and buy non-organic, please don’t. First of all, I have been able to find organic sources at lower prices than non-organic. You just need to do a bit of searching. Secondly, pesticides are being used in much greater volume than ever before, especially since the climate is taking it’s toll on pine trees and predatory insects are having their way with the trees with devastating consequences. These are two reasons Pine Nuts continue to rise in price – the trees are having a hard time of things. If you have care for the environment, it is so incredibly important that we stop soaking it with harsh chemicals meant to KILL. If you are for your health, you probably don’t want to be ingesting foods that are essentially born chock full of toxic chemicals that, again, are designed specifically to KILL. This is my opinion. I’m not a doctor, or a holistic healer, or a scientist. But I sure feel strongly about this particular subject so I beg of you, please splurge responsibly on Pine Nuts.
And thank you.
How do you love your Pine Nuts? Share in the comments below!