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Jan 3, 2011 04:22 PM

Macadamia nuts

Someone just gave me a bag of just picked macadamia nuts and they are a hard nut to crack.
Is there some secret like roasting in the oven first or letting them sit for a certain amount of time?
We've even tried the hammer and it didn't phase the nut. Help!!

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  1. They are incredibly difficult to crack. That's part of the reason they're so expensive.
    This link may help you:

    1. I have the same problem: a friend brought me back a large vacuum-bag of macadamias from China. I'm thinking of getting a C-clamp from a hardware store and see if I can't just clamp them slowly and break them that way. Also, I will try freezing the nuts first (to make the shells more brittle)

      1. I have the same problem after mistakenly buying a bunch of them at a farmer's market. I managed to get a couple open by whacking them with a meat tenderizing hammer, but the process is unpredicable and creates flying projectiles. I'm told the vise technique works, but have yet to find someone who has one. I'm thinking of driving over them in my car- think that would work?

        1 Reply
        1. re: venatrix

          "driving over them in my car- think that would work?"

          Oh, that's funny, but no, somehow I don't how think so, you'd need tires of granite. I had no idea they were so difficult to crack. I've only ever had them out of the shell. Lucky me.

          From todao's ochef link: "It takes 300 pounds per square inch of pressure to crack the shell." Sounds like a job for a tiny but powerful jack hammer.

          This nutcracker might do the trick, claims to crack all nuts:

          Good luck.

        2. We had a couple of trees in our yard in my childhood home. Us kids used to grab a hammer, find a crack or join in the concrete floor of the garage, put the nut on the crack (to stop it rolling or whizzing off into the air) and whack them to open them. After you've done a few, you'll get the hang of it pretty quickly. It just takes a tap-tap-tap, rather than a *SMASH*. Oh, and you will probably develop a recess in the concrete where you crack them, which is useful for further nut cracking - maybe not so useful if the concrete damage would bother you.

          I really took those trees for granted. I'd love to have them in my yard now...

          1. I've read that freezing the nuts for an hour or so makes them easier to crack. It might be worth trying this with a few nuts to see if it helps.