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Your Ultimate Nut Mix

It seems nut mixes, store bought and the ones you buy over the Internet, are basically one size fits all. They mix 'em up and you buy what they mix. I haven't seen a place that allows you to customize your personal nut mix. If you could purchase a bespoke nut mix, what would it be?

Mine would be...

30% filberts
20% almonds
15% cashews
15% walnuts
10% pistachios
10% pecans

They would be roasted and seasoned with a bit of salt and a good dose of powdered New Mexican red chile.

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  1. I would like equal quantities of:
    - cashews
    - pecans
    - marcona almonds

    I would like them with some sort of sugary and salty topping, but the kind that stays soft and fills in the ridges of the pecans, not the kind that gets hard and crunchy. Maybe a wee but of cinnamon or cayenne on some orders, but not all :)

    1. Lots of places and markets (e.g. Whole Foods, Safeway, Vons) have bins of individual types of nuts.

      So, if I am making my own, my idea mix would be equal amounts of dry-roasted, salted pistachios, macadamias, walnuts and cashews, with a handful of wasabi peanuts and Boston Baked Beans (yes, I know peanuts are a legume and not a nut).

      2 Replies
      1. re: ipsedixit

        I don't think I could improve on your mix, including the Boston Baked Beans!

      2. equal parts:

        cashew
        raw almond
        pistachio
        macadamia
        pepita

        mixed with

        dried fruits:

        craisins
        apricots
        dates
        blueberries
        apples
        pears

        dark chocolate chips

        stir well

        1. Hmmm. That's a great question.

          I would say
          40% pistachios
          40% macadamia
          20% walnut.

          Roasted, salted and soon to be gone.

          1. That took some thinking, since I love just about any nut. I like your assortment, PK, but I will upend the list and have the pecans at the top, filberts at the bottom.
            And no chili or spicy stuff. I'm okay with just salt, and maybe a little brown sugar.
            One or two Brazil nuts in there would be fine,too.

            1. I've never tasted a macadamia. Are they as good as their sticker?

              Personally never cared for Brazil nuts. Their gargantuan size make them seem somehow unnatural to me. I understand they grow midget Brazils now, though. Perhaps I would like them.

              12 Replies
              1. re: Perilagu Khan

                To me, macadamias and Brazils taste and feel pretty much the same. It takes me about four bites to eat a Brazil nut, though.

                1. re: Perilagu Khan

                  Macadamias are little pearly spheres of heaven. Chopped, they make a wonderful textured crust for fish - esp. chilean sea bass. Whole, they are a great snack with champagne.

                  I prefer not to mix nuts, and I can eat a lot of cashews at a single sitting.

                  1. re: Veggo

                    What V. said about macadamias is it in a nutshell.

                    My husband loves cashews, but there's something too "sweet" about them to make me eat a ton of them at one sitting. That's about the only nut that I can say that about, tho....and I do love dark (bitter) chocolate covered cashews.

                    1. re: Veggo

                      Macadamias are little pearly spheres of heaven. Chopped, they make a wonderful textured crust for fish - esp. chilean sea bass. Whole, they are a great snack with champagne.
                      ________________

                      Macadamias are the reasons God created Hawai'i.

                      1. re: Veggo

                        Cashews have a marvelous texture. Almost silky.

                        1. re: Perilagu Khan

                          My mix would be a gallon-sized bowl of 100% cashews. Then I would pack a small bag and check into a hotel room for a day or two, as the result would be a gas attack like no other. Picture me blowing myself around the room like someone let go of a balloon, while my husband, cat, and dog shiver together in the yard, contemplating divorce.

                          I love cashews. They don't love me back.

                            1. re: NonnieMuss

                              Indeed. Any other nuts do this to yer?

                        2. re: Perilagu Khan

                          And Brazil nuts are supposed to be a super source of selenium, I think, esp. good for guys prostate health. Not kidding about that fact....a handful per day is supposed to be optimal. Make your own nut jokes.

                          But roger that on Brazil nuts...they have to be copiously seasoned for me. They're kind of "meh" tasting raw.

                          1. re: Perilagu Khan

                            Macadamia nuts are marvelous, PK. If you like cashews, I think you'd like the macadamias. In fact, I know it. But en plein: not the nasty choccy covered ones, because I've never had one that was coated in anything other than waxy, cheap chocolate. Get yourself a can; but be warned....they are sort of the crack of the nut world. :)

                            1. re: mamachef

                              "Crack of the nut world"--seven sordid cracks...er...rebuttals...er jokes just flashed through my gamy mind.

                              1. re: Perilagu Khan

                                Oh, butt PK, you just made a hole bunch of funnies!
                                Varlet.

                          2. As an aside, does Judaism have a special relationship to nuts? I notice many nut purveyors go out of their way to advertise their product as kosher.

                            2 Replies
                            1. re: Perilagu Khan

                              Well, back in the desert days, almonds were a huge source of protein, and are featured in many holiday meals. I can't remember NOT having a bowl of salted almonds around for snacking during family functions. But yes: almonds (and raisins) are a classic combo; of course not just for us Jews....but I haven't seen them featured on Gentile tables. It's a good question. And then, during Passover, we make charoset, which represents the mortar used to build the pyramids: it's a chopped or processed mixture of nuts (usually walnuts, almonds or pecans) blended with chopped apples and wine. We eat it on Matzo. The advertisers may go out of their way to advertise it because of the importance of the laws of kashrut to religious Jews, and many Jewish dessert dishes feature or include nuts. I hope this helps; I realize it's a little disjointed.

                            2. Oh, you evil evil man. My nut mix would be equal parts pecans, pistachios, cashews, walnuts, macadamia nuts and almonds. Maybe a little more of the pecans. No filberts; can NOT stand the things.The almonds have to be blanched and peeled, and all of it must be butter-roasted (a popcorn popper works beautifully for this, believe it or not,) and well-salted w/ coarse salt.

                              And this is not a mix, but during the holidays I enjoy making hot/sweet pecans or walnuts, glazed and baked. So so good. And every now and again, I like making rosemary-spiced walnuts. They make such nice gifts, in Mason jars.

                              10 Replies
                              1. re: mamachef

                                Lordamercy. I had no idea the sweet little filbert could elicit such scorn and bile. I love 'em. They were my mom's favorite nut and I must have inherited her filbert gene.

                                1. re: Perilagu Khan

                                  Filberts irritate and annoy me. When I open a can of salted nuts, if it's Filbert-loaded, why I just get so mad that I refuse to eat 'em. I sure showed THEM, ditten I? (Now they'll be sorry.....)

                                  1. re: mamachef

                                    If you think of them as hazelnuts they may not taste so bad...

                                    1. re: Tripeler

                                      A rose by any other name, right? We actually use the terms interchangeably in these parts - and they still don't attract me. :)

                                      1. re: mamachef

                                        I am from your parts and know that, hence the attempt at a joke. However, I DO know a man actually named Philbert. The only time I have ever heard that name.

                                    2. re: mamachef

                                      I effing hate them too, mamachef- gross little bastards.

                                      1. re: EWSflash

                                        I'm okay with hazelnuts, and I love nutella. I really really really hate brazil nuts. They look like toes or hooves - I don't know. I can't those things and have to pick them out before I eat mixed nuts.

                                        Cheap ass filler nuts!

                                        1. re: nikkib99

                                          I've never met a soul who likes Brazils.

                                          1. re: Perilagu Khan

                                            [raises hand] i do, when they're actually fresh. the problem is that 99% of the packaged Brazil nuts on the market are old and/or rancid. so not only do they look like toes, they usually taste like feet!

                                            1. re: Perilagu Khan

                                              I love brazils! Trader Joe's has had good ones.

                                  2. 30% pecans
                                    30% macadamias
                                    10% cashews
                                    10% marcona almonds
                                    10% brazil nuts
                                    10% shelled pistachios

                                    All of it oil (or butter) roasted and salted with fine salt. I like spiced nuts, but there's just something about perfectly salted plain ones that really satisfies.

                                    1. Darling Daughter reports that her favorite eclectic nut mix would be:
                                      25% Peanut m&m's
                                      25% salted cashews
                                      15% salted macadamias
                                      25% individual dark-chocolate covered almonds
                                      10% roasted pecans
                                      And I am thinking of doing this and making her a big bag for a holiday treat.

                                      2 Replies
                                        1. re: Perilagu Khan

                                          the sweetest. and as a result, she has amazing kids.

                                      1. The entire Sahale Snack mix line fits the bill for me and if I'm inclined I mix my own by following the ingredients list on each bags label. Once Sahale Snacks became avail I stopped buying other brands. If you work your nut mix into recipes, you might enjoy (as I do) many of Sahale's website recipes, which are terrific as well.
                                        http://sahalesnacks.com/ideas.aspx

                                        2 Replies
                                        1. re: HillJ

                                          I just bought a bag of these at Costco. The mix looked too good to pass up.

                                          http://sahalesnacks.com/pomegranate.aspx

                                          1. re: Bob W

                                            Me too, Bob W. The Pomegranate Pistachos with almonds, cherries & black pepper is really terrific.

                                        2. Must it be a mix?
                                          I kind of like my nuts individually. I like to buy them raw and roast (and sometimes salt) them myself.
                                          Sorry if I am a freak.

                                          I have to say that almonds and filberts are probably my favorites. Just not together.

                                          2 Replies
                                          1. re: pedalfaster

                                            That's cool. You're just a purist, that's all. ;)

                                            1. re: pedalfaster

                                              If I had to be a monogomous nut-eater, it would have to be macadamias with maybe a one-night stand every now and then with a cashew.

                                            2. I would remove the walnuts and pecans, I just don't like 'em. Replace with macadamias. 20% of each.

                                              1. If you try these cashews, you might up the cashew percentage in your mix. Seriously, that good. When they say roasted in butter, they mean it. And these are the biggest cashews I've ever seen.

                                                http://skinnerssugarhouse.com/nuts.html

                                                4 Replies
                                                1. re: Bob W

                                                  For pistachios, I swear by this place: http://heartofthedesert.com/

                                                  They're relatively cheap, too.

                                                  1. re: Perilagu Khan

                                                    Pistachios and wine, that's an interesting combo.
                                                    I have been disappointed by the # of suppliers who don't care about the # of closed nuts per lb that I only buy shelled pistachios. How does Heart of the Desert compare?

                                                    1. re: HillJ

                                                      First, the wine is nothing to write home about, although that part of the world, loosely defined, actually produces some very good wine.

                                                      As to the pistachios, you can buy the nutmeats or in the shell. We always buy the latter and a very small percentage are fully closed. Heart of the Desert really believes in quality control.

                                                    2. re: Perilagu Khan

                                                      Yes, those are rockin' "stachies" (as we used to call them back in the day). I think we got a bag with lemon pepper seasoning, and I got a bag with chili something. They didn't last long at all.

                                                      For HillJ, it's been a while since we got an order from them, but I don't recall any problem with too many closed nuts.

                                                  2. You know what I miss (among other things, like my sanity?)

                                                    Remember the ubiquitous nut bowls of the holiday season? I don't think this was an Italian American thing, nor a New England thing, but from Halloween to New Years, there seemed to be a constantly depleted-and-replenished bowl of mixed nuts in the shell in every house I visited.

                                                    Brazil nuts, pecans, walnuts, almonds and PK, those filberts were the mainstays--all in their shells. They'd be in one of those big wooden 1970's salad bowls, nutcrackers and nutpicks and little side dishes standing by.

                                                    Used to be so impressed by my (aircraft mechanic) dad's ability to crack walnuts, etc, with his bare hands. I remember pecans were slippery buggers, too.

                                                    3 Replies
                                                    1. re: pinehurst

                                                      Most of our markets still sell those nut assortment trays with nutcrackers and/or nutpicks around the holidays. I see them in the produce department of grocery stores too. Some even include small jars of jellies and some with mini sausage and hard cheeses. However, a brand name escapes me. pineh, do you recall a brand name?

                                                      1. re: pinehurst

                                                        How right you recollect! Indeed, as I was perusing a Figi's catalog (Figi's has a bit of a retro flair), the idea for this thread came to mind.

                                                        PS--Remember the "Inertia Nutcracker"? I think it was made by Ronco or Popiel. It sort of operated on the battering ram principle. Haven't seen one in a coon's age.

                                                        1. re: pinehurst

                                                          Hi HillJ! Yes, I've seen little trays (usually wicker trays) in my area with nuts and a few little hard strawberry/butterscotch candies. In my local store, they're low-end...little last minute hostess gifts on the cheap type things.

                                                          I seem to remember my mom buying bags of assorted nuts (Diamond brand?) in the shell, in the mixture described (filbert, almond, pecan, brazil, walnut). She'd pick up an extra bag of just walnuts, because they always went quickly.

                                                          I totally remember the Inertia Nutcracker, PK. We had those little jobbies they give you with a lobster and in tiny greedy little kid hands, like mine, they weren't easy!
                                                          Still gobbled my share tho....

                                                        2. wow, not much love for the peanut around here

                                                          3 Replies
                                                          1. re: BiscuitBoy

                                                            Heh. Well, are you plumping for the peanut?

                                                            1. re: Perilagu Khan

                                                              sure....your spice, but replace filbert, walnut, and pecan with peanut, macadamia, and hazel

                                                          2. 30% pecans
                                                            30% walnuts
                                                            20% marcona almonds
                                                            20% Turkish pistachios

                                                            All roasted & salted and very fresh.

                                                              1. Hmmm

                                                                35% pistachios (sweet chili if I can get them)
                                                                35% almonds (honey dijon for those)
                                                                30% cashews (just 1/2 the salt for those please)

                                                                1. 30% Turkish Antep pistachios
                                                                  25% Marcona Almonds
                                                                  25% Pecans
                                                                  10% Virginia peanuts (legume status doesn't bother me at all)
                                                                  10% Black walnuts

                                                                  All roasted, salted and shelled.

                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                  1. re: CDouglas

                                                                    Doesn't bother me either. Biological taxonomy is so convoluted sometimes I think even the agronomists don't know what is what.

                                                                  2. setting aside spicing & flavoring options other than salt because there are just too many possible combinations:

                                                                    20% marcona almonds
                                                                    20% macadamias
                                                                    15% pistachios
                                                                    15% cashews
                                                                    15% pecans
                                                                    15% walnuts

                                                                    roasted, with a hint of sea salt.

                                                                    1. Anyone ever tried hickory nuts? They are like a sweeter, more delicate pecan.

                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                      1. re: sandylc

                                                                        I grew up with 3 magnificent hickory trees on our property. They were a lot of work for not much nut meat. I enjoyed watching the red squirrels feast on them, and lying under the trees while the squirrels were busy. It was a gentle rain of mellifluous shell bits tumbling down from a beautiful canopy, the music provided by cute rodents with no claim for attention.

                                                                      2. Thank God you don't have brazil nuts - those look like toes and I see no point to them at all.

                                                                        Almonds: 30%
                                                                        Peanuts: 20%
                                                                        Pistachios: 20%
                                                                        Dry roasted Cashews: 15%
                                                                        Filberts: 10%
                                                                        Honey roasted peanuts: 15%

                                                                        2 Replies
                                                                        1. re: nikkib99

                                                                          "those look like toes and I see no point to them at all."

                                                                          Heh heh.

                                                                          And I think there's definitely a causal relationship there. ;)

                                                                        2. By nut count:-
                                                                          Marconas 30%
                                                                          Hazelnuts 20%
                                                                          Cashews 20%
                                                                          Pecans 20%
                                                                          Brazils 5%
                                                                          Macadamias 5%

                                                                          All roasted without oil or salt.

                                                                          1. I never met a nut I didn't like. How about one of each?

                                                                            2 Replies
                                                                            1. re: sandylc

                                                                              only one? that's some serious willpower ;)

                                                                              1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                                                                Ha! I was speaking of ratios, actually. But if you think about it, one of each together might make an awfully nice same-time-every-day little snack! Just a nice little bowl of salt and energy.

                                                                            2. I'm revising my nut mix.

                                                                              I now like equal measures of filberts, cashews and pecans. Prepared in the fashion of Chex Mix.

                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                              1. re: Perilagu Khan

                                                                                You mean, "Philberts," right? LOLOL.

                                                                              2. I can think of two real ways to answer that question. If I was confining myself to those types of nuts that are conventionally available I'd probably go about 75% walnuts (preferably blanched, or selected for the palest possible skins (I have a bit of a problem with jugulone), 20% brazil nuts and 5% pecans.
                                                                                If, on the other hand I was permitted to select ANY type of nuts, from anywhere on this globe. Idd add some or all of the following

                                                                                1. Skittle/Paradise Nut (Lecythis ollaria or other species of Lecythis) South America, A close relative of the Brazil Nut, and consider by some experts to be even tastier (It's not generally available even in it's native area though, due to the fact that the fruits of these species open naturally at maturity (those of Brazil nuts do not) so loss due to predation due to monkeys and other animals is quite high (most Brazil nuts are still wild collected, as the trees are somewhat hard to cultivate)
                                                                                2. Chilean Hazel (Gevuina avellana ) South America. Despite the name, this nut is actually more closely related to the Macadamia nut than the hazel. Taste is sort of like a cross between the two
                                                                                3. Oyster Nut (Telfairia pedata) Africa. Actually the seed of a kind of gourd. This nut us quite popular in much of Africa. On the downside,they are supposed to be rather hard to open (the have a fibrous net over the seed kernel, which much be cut off before the nut is cracked (or it will imbed itself in the nutmeat. I am tempted to add the seeds of the Nara melon/butterpip (Acanthosicyos horridus) as well, as it's seeds are said to taste much like oily almonds. However, having seen seeds Acanthosicyos firsthand, they seem a little small to be put in a nut mix without getting lost

                                                                                4. Quandong (Santalum Acuminatum/spicatum) Australia. Supposedly the kernels of this are supposed to taste much like hazelnuts (though softer) The fruit the seeds are contained in is supposed to taste a bit like peach.

                                                                                1. 50% roasted no salt almonds
                                                                                  30% kettle roasted peanuts
                                                                                  10% roasted no salt cashews
                                                                                  5% roasted no salt Brazil nuts
                                                                                  5% roasted no salt filberts

                                                                                  when i go up to the sierras, all i bring for sustenance are trail mix and tortillas