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$30 pine nuts

I wanted to buy pine nuts for pesto, but when I looked at the price they were $30 a pound (okay $29.99). I'm not used to them being cheap, but I can't believe they cost more then wild line caught salmon! Outside of maybe saffron and vanilla beans I don't think there is another grocery item at that price. What gives?

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  1. B EWARE, Most pine nuts come from China now, and there are problems!

    http://www.foodchannel.com/stories/29...

    4 Replies
    1. re: ospreycove

      I suspect the reason the ones she saw were $30/lb is that they aren't from China.

      1. re: Ruth Lafler

        Ruth,
        I would pay the $30.00; but try and find Pine Nuts that are not from China. The harvesting work must be too tedious for the Italians, and the immigrant workers in Italy.

      2. re: ospreycove

        I just had this reaction to some pinenuts I ate last week. Am still experiencing it actually, it was really awful and is now just annoying.
        EVERYTHING had a bitter aftertaste, and I mean every little thing. Even water.
        I keep my pinenuts in the freezer and buy them from a reputable purveyor. Going to call them and get a fresh batch, hopefully from Italy.
        I'm thinking this happens because of age. They certainly weren't rancid, but maybe over time the composition changes?
        As far as I know, noone else had a reaction to the cookies that caused this for me. Weird.

        1. re: rabaja

          I just read something about this a minute ago. It is a reaction to the pine nuts. The writer didn't think it was due to the age of the nuts.

      3. Even costco is up over $20/lb. I am adjusting recipes since this is past my income bracket. For example, making pesto without pine nuts and then toasting a few to add to whatever I serve the pesto with.

        I have also tried substituting walnuts and almonds in a few places where they are ground up and it almost works.

        3 Replies
        1. re: smtucker

          I'm lucky that I'm not a pesto-hound. Did gasp when I saw the Costco price. But because I don't make anything that uses more than one or two tbsp. ofthem at a time, I will buy soon as I'm running low. I keep them in the freezer and that bag will last a long, long time. It's not like a $30 bottle of wine that's gone after once around the table :)

          1. re: c oliver

            You are absolutely correct. I have, in the past, used a little over one Costco bag per summer since I do like to freeze pesto for the winter. This year, I am freezing something I am calling basil-garlic-oil. I will add cheese and pine-nuts later if needed.

            Just adjusting to the current economic realities while preserving the summer garlic and basil bounty.

          2. re: smtucker

            I love pesto made with fresh California grown English walnuts. They must be fresh. The pesto is so subtle and of course, nutty!

          3. The original comment has been removed
            1. I've been substituting skinless almonds for pine nuts, since they are too expensive for me this year. I agree, they are up there with the saffron for really high pricing. And I don't like them once they have been frozen....

              1. Well, I'm glad I'm not the only one shocked by the cost. And I was wondering if it was only my market (I also checked out WF which was a few dollars more.) I buy them in bulk (and organic) from my grocery market. The little baggie I just finished had a price per pound listed at 16.99. The new baggie I just got listed the price per pound as 35.99. YIKES!

                I'm still buying, little bits at a time as I usually would. But I have substituted toasted walnuts in the past in pesto and found that to be quite tasty.