Go nuts with almonds | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, January 16, 2018 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, January 16, 2018

Go nuts with almonds

We all experience cravings  and often end up snacking on unhealthy food. Almonds are not only a great snack, but also the most nutrition packed nuts of them all.

A serving of one ounce of almonds carry 161 calories, 13 grams of unsaturated fat, and 3.4 grams of fibre. Almonds also carry lots of potassium, calcium, magnesium, iron, vitamin E and phosphorous . To top it all off, almonds do not have any cholesterol whatsoever.

HEALTHY HEART

Consuming a handful of almonds a few times a day, that is about an ounce or so, can prevent heart diseases by lowering 'bad' cholesterol (LDL) and increasing 'good' cholesterol (HDL) in the body. They also aid in reducing levels of homocystein, which is an amino acid or protein that helps in building up fatty plaque in arteries.

HEALTHY BLOOD VESSELS

Almonds can also help stabilise blood pressure reducing risks of a lot of diseases.

WEIGHT LOSS

Almonds help lose weight in the healthiest way possible. A lot of unhealthy weight gain occurs because of snacking on oily foods, which trick you into thinking you need more. Whereas consuming almonds fill you up instantly, so you abstain from eating too much junk food, but whatever almond you consume contributes to your health with its nutrients.

CLEAR VISION

According to Harvard School of Medicine, high levels of vitamin E in almonds help to protect against macular degeneration, an age-related eye problem, which eventually ends in a loss of vision.

SPEEDY METABOLISM

Almonds have high levels of magnesium, which is essential for the production of more than few hundred enzymes in the body that keeps us running. Other than these, almonds also help reduce chances of diabetes, Alzheimer's, cancer, and other similar chronic diseases.

Overall, almonds are super tasty, there a wide variety of delectable dishes and snacks that you could make out of them, they are widely available, are loaded with all the nutrients you require, and is a nut that will not make a dent in your wallet even if you purchase by the lot. What more can we ask from a super food.

 

ALMOND RECIPES

Cinnamon vanilla almonds butter

Almonds in their raw form is edible and contains a lot of nutrients, but our body absorbs them better when the almond is roasted. Dry roasting is recommended and roasting with oil, butter or honey can add calories. If raw almonds are not your thing, try out any of these recipes, or the hundred others that you can find online that makes use of almonds.

Ingredients

2 cups roasted almonds

½ tablespoon vanilla extract

1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

1 tablespoon olive oil

Method

Place almonds in the bowl of a food processor and process until finely ground. Add the rest of the ingredients and blend for a few minutes at a time, making sure to scrape the sides of the food processor bowl frequently (if the mixture sticks). Process for about 5-7 minutes, or until smooth and creamy. Store in a closed jar or container.

Almond joy cookies

Ingredients

1 (14 oz) bag sweetened coconut flakes

2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips

2/3 cup lightly chopped, salted almonds

1 can sweetened condensed milk (regular, or fat-free)

Method

Preheat the oven to 325F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside. In a large bowl combine coconut, chocolate chips, almonds, and sweetened condensed milk. Stir until combined. Scoop out dough with a cookie scoop onto prepared baking sheet. Moisten the tips of your fingers with water and shape into discs. Pat the tops flat. Bake cookies for 12 to 14 minutes or until tips of coconut are just starting to turn golden brown. Let cool on baking sheet. Store cookies in an airtight container.

Note —Parchment paper is critical for these cookies to turn out right. Silicone mats, waxed paper, etc. will yield a slightly different result.

 

Candied almonds

Ingredients

3 cups almonds

1 cup sugar

1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

½ cup water

Method

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with a silicon baking mat or parchment paper, add the almonds to the baking sheet. Roast for 12 minutes. In a large pan, add in the sugar, cinnamon and water; whisk everything together. Allow the mixture to come to a boil; add the almonds to the mixture. Cook and stir on medium-heat until the liquid evaporates and leaves a syrup-like coating on the almonds. Pour the almonds back onto the baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a silicon baking mat; separate the almonds and allow them to cool. Enjoy your candied almonds!

 

Recipes and photos: Collected

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