NUTS AND OIL SEEDS
NUTRITIVE VALUE OF NUTS
Nuts are a rich source of protein and fat and a good source of B - Vitamin and antioxidant vitamin E. They are a concentrated source of energy.
Groundnut, cashewnut, coconut and almonds are the nuts commoly used in India and their nutritive value is given in
1. Groundnuts are a very rich source of protein and fat. They are exceptionally rich in niacin. Groundnuts are boiled or roasted and consumed.
a. It is also used in the preparation of groundnut butter. The chief product is the oil which can be used for cooking. The cake left after the oil is extracted is purified and used in supplementary mixes.
2. Cashewnuts are also a rich source of protein and fat and contain appreciable amount of iron. It is widely used in the preparation of sweets and confectionery.
a. It can be roasted and eaten. Cashewnuts are also used to garnish dishes such as pulavs and payasam.
3. The white flesh of coconut is rich in calories though not a very good source of protein. It is extensively used in cookery in Tamil Nadu and Kerala in the preparation of curries, chutneys, sweets and puddings.
a. The white flesh when dried is called copra and has a high content of oil.
4. Almonds are expensive and are used in the preparation of badam milk and sweets. It is a rich source of protein that are not of high biological value.
Almonds are an excellent source of vitamin E, an antioxidant.
OIL SEEDS Groundnut :
Groundnut oil which is obtained from groundnut is a clear amber coloured liquid which is extensively used in cooking. It is used in the preparation of margarine, vanaspathi and preservation of sardine fish.
The residue left after the oil extraction of groundnut is the groundnut cake, which is used in the preparation of groundnut flour and cattle feed for farm animals.
Coconut oil is extracted from dried coconut. It can also be used in the preparation of vanaspathi and margarine. Coconut cake obtained after oil extraction is a valuable feed for cattle.
Soyabean yields substantial amount of oil. The whole dry beans contain 40 percent protein and 20 percent fat. In India, soyabean oil finds its application in the manufacture of vanaspathi.
The meal after oil extraction is being used widely as a poultry feed. The protein isolated from soyabean meal after oil extraction is being successfully incorporated in weaning and supplementary foods.
Sesame seeds :
Gingelly oil is extracted from sesame seed and it is a traditional oil that has been used in India. The roasted seeds are mixed with jaggery syrup and made into balls and eaten.
Decorticated seeds contain 25 percent oil and are used for oil extraction. Sesame seeds are a fair source of protein and calcium.
ROLE OF NUTS IN COOKERY
Nuts and oilseeds are used in cookery as whole, halved, ground or desiccated.
1. Nuts are used in fresh, raw, roasted, boiled or salted forms and also fried forms.
2. Nuts are used as thickening agents. Coconut and cashewnuts are used as thickening agents in the preparation of gravy.
3. Chutneys can be made and used from nuts, e.g., groundnut and coconut.
4. Sweets can be made from nuts, e.g., cashewnut and coconut burfi.
5. Powders made out of nuts like groundnut and coconut are used as chutneys and salad dressing.
6. Nuts are used to garnish ice-creams and cakes
7. Nuts are used in beverages, e.g, badam kheer.
8. Peanut butter is used as a topping on bread or as side dish along with chapathis.