The Autumn Equinox starts today. It’s the end of the summer and the start of autumn in the Northern Hemisphere.
In September in Northern Italy, we harvest not only walnuts and hazelnuts but also pears, apples and mostly grapes. September is a busy month.
My daughter is an MD and suggested we eat no more than 4 to7 walnuts per day.
I’m lucky to have walnut and hazelnut trees growing in our backyard. Unfortunately, I’ll have to talk with the wild boars. I went for a walk with my basket and found that most nuts had been eaten by the boars.
In case you don’t know what a wild boar looks like, here’s a pic of mama with her babies. Does she look ferocious? Animals sense if you want to do them harm. But since I’m an animal lover, she let me take a picture of her family, just as long as I didn’t touch her babies.
The boar cracks the nut open with its strong jaws and leaves huge footprints and plows the grounds with his snout. Boars bathe in our muddy pond I made for the wild animals and rub off the parasites and excess mud against the bark. I can even evaluate how big the boar was by the mud line he left on the tree trunk. I can say that he or she is a Biggy.
Walnuts contain polyunsaturated fats and Omega-3 and Omega-6. In Italy people usually eat them at Christmas. When WWII ended in 1945, there wasn’t much to eat, so my mother in law said, God bless her soul. The Italian economy had collapsed. They would harvest anything they could get their hands on. Chestnuts, walnuts, hazelnuts, and other goodies nature had to offer. Nothing went to waste.
How to use walnuts and hazelnuts.
You can add walnuts to salads and cakes. As an appetizer, wrap them in San Daniele ham (prosciutto crudo), stuff the fig with gorgonzola cheese (a creamy and delicate blue cheese) and add the nut and ham in the middle.
With the hazelnuts make cookies. Called ‘Baci di Dama.’ First, you toast them then grind them into flour. Add butter, flour, and sugar, and voilà.
The hazelnut oil derived from grinding the nuts is saved in glass jars for further use. Hazelnut oil costs an arm and a leg. The oil is a true delicacy. Try it on parmesan cheese or provolone.
For the grapes, I tried to make wine, but after three days it became vinegar. Now I make grape juice. It’s a lot easier. This year has been a good year. No drought and therefore a lot of fruit. The only problem is to find the time to prepare the grape, and apple juice or compost. With the grapes, you can also make a delicious jam. Here we go again if I can find the time to do all of this.
I’ll eventually post a few recipes as soon as I figure out how to create a downloadable file in .pdf on my website.
Please bear with me I’m new on WordPress. If you know how to do it, please tell me.
I’ll look it up in the meantime, or to save time I’ll chat with WordPress employees; they are awesome.