It may surprise you to know that our little country, South Africa is the largest macadamia nut producer in the world with production increasing by 4000 Hectares a year. They’re mostly grown in the Limpopo region as they do well in more tropical areas where avocados, papayas, mangoes and bananas are grown.
Green Farms Nut Company, SA’s largest and first privately owned macadamia nut processor, says the global industry is pretty small, making up only 1% of tree nut volume, which means South Africa stands to gain the most from any expansion.
Many people are lead to believe that Australia takes the cake for being the world’s primary producer because the macadamia species of tree is indigenous to the country. The plant was, in fact, given the name ‘Macadamia’ in 1857 after the Scottish-Australian chemist, medical teacher, and politician, John Macadam.
If you’ve never cooked with macadamia nuts, you really are missing out. They’re chewy, creamy and crunchy while having more of a ‘meaty’ flesh than other common nuts. And they’ve also got tons of health benefits.
We’ve got 5 recipes for you to try featuring these brilliant bulbous little balls…
Tips on how to store macadamia nuts:
1. Once you open the packaging, place the nuts in an airtight container or resealable plastic bag to protect them from air and moisture as oxygen can cause the oil in the nuts to go rancid.
2. If you’re going to be keeping the nuts for an extended period, it’s best to refrigerate them as it prolongs the shelf life for six months and up to a year if frozen.
3. If you think the nuts have gone rancid, you’ll know for sure if you smell them. They will have a similar smell to wet paint.
4. TAKE NOTE – Macadamia nuts are toxic to dogs. If eaten, they could cause muscle spasms and even paralysis.
If you’re allergic to a certain food, make sure you really are before turning your perfect evening into some poor chef’s nightmare! We all know that being vegan is rather à la mode these days but if you’re not highly allergic to eggs or another ingredient you don’t eat, please be thoughtful enough to inform your waiter when placing an order.