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Jan 30, 2012 05:13 AM

Please.....Don't skin or blanch your nuts!

The skins of nuts contain lots of anti-oxidants, vitamins, minerals and fiber. They also add texture and flavor to the nuts and to nut butters. The 'brown' on pistachios is dark red anthocyanins, potent ant-oxidants also found in peanut skins, especially redskin peanuts(as well as in blueberries and other red/purple/blue/black fruits etc......What? You skin your peanuts too?!). You're throwing away a lot of the goodness and wasting time needlessly.'s like refining wholewheat flour to white flour or brown rice to white rice. You end up with rubbish that looks pure and white on a plate......not a healthy product. Like Frank Sinatra's song..."All or nothing at all...."

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    1. I agree completely. I grew up with and still always eat unblanched (unskinned?) almonds. About a year ago I saw blanched almonds in a German supermarket. It looked really weird to me--I'd never seen anything like it.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Wawsanham

        They look weird to me too. Like polished white rice!

      2. 'Fraid I've got to keep blanching and/or skinning..........I mainly use nuts in baking, and I really really hate when the nut skins get caught in my throat like hair.

        6 Replies
        1. re: mamachef

          +1... hate that 'catchy' feeling. And I don't like the skins papery quality either.

          1. re: mamachef

            I don't mind my nuts with skins on in baking, etc., but sometimes when I want to roast them I don't want the bitter, burnt skins.

            1. re: TheHuntress

              Point taken. I roast peanuts at 300F for 25 minutes as a single layer of nuts in the oven. This is a lot lower temperature than often quoted. At that temperature the skins dont' appear to burn. What temperature do you use?

              1. re: ggaylmer

                Well I only have one recipe that I really use often that requires the skins removed. It's a roast parsnip and pear salad and due to other ingredients and how the salad is made the hazelnuts need to go in no lower than 180c (370f) and preferably at 200c (390f). So I toast the nuts in the pan first and then rub them with a clean tea towel to remove the skins, before putting them into the oven. I actually don't mind the skins at all and am more than happy to eat them, but there are occasions they need to be removed.

                1. re: TheHuntress

                  I wouldn't argue there...I'd hate to get too dogmatic about things. There are already far too many extremists in the world today. There are those raw-foodists who believe that cooking or heating any food renders it unfit for human consumption by destroying its natural enzymes.
                  I was never taught anything about food or cooking at school. I approach cooking purely from a nutritional perspective and automatically alter most recipes I find to suit my own principles and ideas. I can't abide these toffee-nosed chefs who studied under such and such a French master and are more concerned with the look and presentation of food than its nutritional benefit, e.g. building architecture on your plate and charging you a fortune. However, thank goodness we are all different otherwise life would be boring!

            2. re: mamachef

              I've never found that problem with ground up raw nuts, though I have sometimes noticed it with whole roast peanuts in their skins for example.

            3. I wonder how many pounds of peanuts you'd need to eat with the skins on to get any sort of clinical benefit from the skins?

              1 Reply
              1. re: freia

                I can't vouch for any clinical benefit of peanuts, but it's surprising how much nutrients, minerals, vitamins and fiber is lost, for example, when refining wholewheat flour to white flour, despite a fairly small fraction by weight being taken away. Compare the fiber content of these flours: Approx. 10.7%(wholewheat) against 2.4%(white). See USDA link:


                Fiber is something that is lower than optimal in the average diet and, according to doctors, can help guard against weight gain, diabetes and cancer.

              2. I must admit, the title caught my eye.