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Feb 12, 2006 09:09 AM

favorite recipes using walnut oil?

  • e

I having a "where have you been all my life?" epiphany about walnut oil-- I sprung for some with the leftovers on a Williams-Sonoma gift certificate, and now am regretting avoiding the expense lo these many years of cooking.

So far, I've been limiting my use of the oil to a salad dressing with sherry vinegar and various herbs-- and it's been wonderful on salad, hard boiled eggs, cold roasted beets, and warm beluga lentils. I hesitate to cook with it and ruin the lovely flavor, but I'll take hounds' word for it if it works in particular recipes. Any suggestions?

Many thanks.

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  1. EMBD, Drizzle some walnut oil on acorn squash when you bake it. (Along with butter and a little brown sugar). The result is amazing.

    1. Use it to make a dressing for a grain salad, such as quinoa or wild rice. Add various roasted vegetables, some fruit if you like (I don't), a few chopped toasted walnuts, herbs, garlic, onions. The walnut oil really brings out the nuttiness in the grain.

      10 Replies
      1. re: Aaron

        Just to add...It's also delicious drizzled atop soups, or bruschetta varieties of complimentary flavors. I don't like to cook with it much, because it has a very low smoke point, and I think it loses some flavor.

        1. re: Aaron

          Have you used it in any desserts?

          1. re: toodie jane

            No I haven't, and I haven't seen it called for either. It might work in a tart or something, but it has a savory quality, almost meaty/proteinish (that's as well as I can describe it), so I'm not sure how well it would work.
            Might be worth an back if you try it.

            1. re: Aaron

              "it has a savory quality, almost meaty/proteinish "

              sounds like umami, to me...

            2. re: toodie jane

              I don't have a recipe at hand, but there are walnut cake recipes that call for it.

              1. re: toodie jane

                yes! Deborah Madison's "a little nut cookie" (in Vegetarian Cooking or everyone). Use 1 T of nut oil instead of 1 T of butter in shortbread/nut cookies. Accentuates the nut flavor.

                1. re: willow

                  Great! I have this cookbook and have never tried her desserts. Thanks for the suggestion.

                  1. re: willow

                    Although she definitely uses walnut oil in other recipes (I'm thinking maybe on some of the salads?) the little nut cookie (which really is delicious) is the only dessert I can think of in which she uses it. (YMMV: my memory's not perfect!)

                    1. re: smokey

                      yes, I love that little nut cookie -- it IS delicious! I've been making it for years w/ different nuts. Sometimes baking a half batch and freezing remainder for another occasion. Everyone always loves it.

                      1. re: willow

                        I made these little nut cookies for the first time tonight, minus the walnut oil. I may splurge on the walnut oil for next batch (and I"ll definitely use it in salad dressings, et). The cookies are sooooo great! Yum. I am always thrilled to try a new recipe and find it to be a keeper.

            3. f

              I don't cook with it per se, because I think it has a low smoke point and loses some of its flavor when heated too much. However, it's lovely tossed with some chopped toasted walnuts and with steamed haricots verts. Add a little chopped fresh herb of your choice and some thinly sliced radishes (in summer, halved cherry tomatoes) and you have a wonderful and versatile side dish.

              I also like to use walnut oil in salad dressings, especially on bitter greens.

              1. f
                fai jay (fai jackson)

                I have used it to flavour a baked potato i.e. I remove the flesh from the potato and mix it with salt, pepper,oil and a little butter. I think it is subtle but delicious. People are always asking what's in the potatoes or what type of potato it is. Sometimes, I toss chopped toasted walnuts on top.

                As others have said it is not an oil to cook in, but to be used in flavourings.

                1. In France, many millions of years ago, I was taught to saute some bread crumbs and garlic in walnut oil, along with broken up walnuts and some chopped parsley, s + p, and to use it all as an omelette filling. Divine. Also, walnut oil is sensational as the fat in walnut tortes (and other nut oils with their appropriate nuts); John Ash has a recipe in Cooking One On One, which I haven't tried, but there are lots of others out there. For other ideas, look in French cookbooks; I'm seeing it as a cooking medium for fried eggs, potatoes, uses in vinaigrettes, and as a finishing oil for vegetables, as already mentioned. It is certainly delicious stuff!

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: Noeldottir

                    That walnut/bread crumb/parsley/s+p/garlic combo is great as a pasta sauce too. Nice thick toothsome noodles tossed in that sauce and moistened with reserved cooking water are a pleasant simple surprise.