Monday, 12 March 2018

Last year's Walnuts.



2017 was a bad year for Walnuts here. The trees (along with many vineyards) were damaged in a late frost, and that was that.

Luckily I have one tree that is slightly protected from frost, and I was able to pick just enough green immature nuts to make about a Kilo of pickles; one large and one small jars.

Pickled Walnuts take time. They are best kept for a couple of years before broaching. Yesterday I decided to open the small jar; just to make sure they are OK.

Branston is always good with cheese, as is good home-mixed mustard; but best of all (especially if you have some really tasty mature Cheddar) are a couple of pickled Walnuts.

When I get to the actual pickling stage with my Walnuts, I always add sugar. It takes away the tartness of the nuts, and brings out the flavour. If you intend to pickle some this early summer, I suggest you do the same; it makes all the difference. And make sure you pick them before any interior wood has started to form.

N.B. In a year's time the yellow-ish interior should turn completely black, and they will soften even more than they already have. Delicious.


25 comments:

  1. Of all the quick, Japanese pickles I make I have never tasted or tried pickling walnuts. But I do not live near Walnut trees. Pecans Almonds and Pistachio grow around Tucson.

    cheers, parsnip

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    1. There are only a three pickles that I make every year without fail; Walnuts, Onions, and Red Cabbage.

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  2. I used to get them here - large jars from a friend of a friend but, alas, no longer. I just googled them and see there is an importer of Opies Pickled Walnuts. Must look for them the next time we are down near the shop.

    There is also a company in the South Island that pickles walnuts.

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    1. Opies are the best of the commercial ones.

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  3. Never heard of pickled walnuts. Interesting.
    Greetings Maria x

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    1. Not to everyone's taste Maria, but I adore them.

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  4. Interesting to see your pickled walnuts. I was going to pickle a few of my own but never got round to it.
    Very english, pickles and cheddar. Do you mix your own mustard?

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    1. Yes, but not always. I keep my Colman's mustard powder for special occasions.

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  5. Sadly no walnuts here to pickle, but i do enjoy the home-made onions, beetroot and red cabbage. And eggs.

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    Replies
    1. I must do some eggs; I love those too.

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  6. I cannot imagine what pickled walnuts taste like. Chicken?

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    1. I might have to think about this for a while...

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  7. Your post inspired me to pull off my shelf no less than Elizabeth David's "Spices, Salt and Aromatics in the English Kitchen". My memory had not let me down and I quote:

    THE COLONEL'S SAUCE CUPBOARD

    ... I have a deep respect for both walnut and mushroom ketchup, soy, and tomato conserve. Then as special trifles, we must not forget caviare, olives farcies, and anchovies in oil.(Culinary Jottings for Madras, 'Wyvern' - Colonel Kenney-Herbert, 5th Edition 1885).

    Another entry in David's book, this time her quoting from The Taste of Madeleines, Eileen Culshaw, 1963

    "Thick slices of a new household bread - the round, flat pain de menage; all the better when a little wood ash from the oven bottom still clung to the underside, were spread thickly with cream butter and studded with fresh walnuts, peeled off their bitter skin and sprinkled with freshly ground coarse crystal salt."

    And no, the above wasn't googled, copied and pasted. Off the page on my left, typed up by my own fair hands for your delectation.

    Myself? In absence of pickled and/or fresh walnuts I'll make do with Merchant's Gourmet Whole Chestnuts (in a hermetically sealed pouch).

    U

    ReplyDelete
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    1. You've covered a lot of ground there. We are in a big Walnut and Chestnut growing area, so most of their delights are known to us. However, no Frenchman in his right mind would eat a pickled Walnut.

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  8. If we ever get back to France this year I might have a go at pickling some walnuts.

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    1. Just make sure you harvest them before any interior wood has formed.

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  9. The opposite here. 2016 bad year. Small ones and lots with nothing inside. 2017 was a much better year. Walnuts good for heart, brain, dogs, liver . . . so probably for everythin ;-)

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    1. I drink two teaspoons of Walnut oil every morning, and consume several actual nuts every day.

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  10. I make pickled eggs,onion and cabbage. Have never tried walnuts so will look for them on market day.

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    1. Doc, the Walnuts have to be picked whilst still green, and before any interior wood has formed. I think the only way you'd get them is by either having your own tree, or having a friend with one. The immature nuts have to be watched very carefully, and regularly pierced to make sure you get them just right.

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    2. Here in France I pick mine at the beginning of June.

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  11. I've never heard of pickled walnuts. Sounds interesting. I cannot imagine what they would taste like. Could you do the same with pecans?

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