Pistachios are a type of nut that is native to the Middle East and Central Asia. They are small, oval-shaped nuts with a thin, hard shell that is typically split open to reveal the nut inside. Pistachios are often eaten as a snack, and are also used in a variety of dishes, including baked goods, desserts, and savory dishes.
You’ll find that pistachios are a good source of protein, fiber, and various nutrients, including vitamin B6, thiamin, and phosphorus. They are also relatively low in calories compared to other nuts. However, like all nuts, pistachios are high in fat and should be consumed in moderation as part of a balanced diet. Even though they are tasty, you should try to limit them if you can. 😉
The Different Types of Pistachios
There are several different types of pistachios that are grown and harvested around the world.
Iranian pistachios are the most widely cultivated type of pistachio and are known for their large size and sweet, nutty flavor. They are typically grown in the Middle East, including in Iran, Turkey, and Syria.
California pistachios are grown in the United States, specifically in California. They are known for their small to medium size and their slightly bitter, slightly sweet flavor. These are the most prominent type of pistachio found in supermarkets within the United States.
There are also Sicilian, Chinese, and Indian pistachios as well. Each type of pistachio has its own unique flavor and texture, and can be used in a variety of dishes and recipes.
Powdered pistachios, also known as pistachio flour or pistachio meal, is a type of ground pistachio that is made by grinding pistachios into a fine powder. It can be used as a flour alternative in baking and cooking, and can be added to smoothies and other beverages as a protein boost.
Pistachio flour is a good source of protein and fiber, and it has a slightly sweet, nutty flavor. It can be used in a variety of dishes, including baked goods, desserts, and savory dishes. It is also a good choice for those who are allergic to nuts, as it is a less allergenic form of pistachio.
To use pistachio flour, you can simply substitute it for all-purpose flour or another type of flour in your recipes. Keep in mind that pistachio flour may have a slightly denser texture than other types of flour, so you may need to adjust the amount of liquid in your recipes accordingly. You can also experiment with using a combination of pistachio flour and other types of flour in your recipes to create unique flavors and textures.
Shelled & Unshelled Whole Pistachios
These are what most people know about when they think of pistachio nuts. Nutritionally, they are the same. While the shelled versions are more convenient, they also go bad easier. Un shelled bags of pistachios are generally less expensive due to the less amount of work needed to process them.
How to Properly Store Pistachios
Pistachios should be stored in a cool, dry place to keep them fresh and prevent them from becoming rancid or stale. Here are a few tips for storing pistachios:
Shelled pistachios should be stored in an airtight container or bag to prevent them from becoming stale or absorbing odors from other foods. They can be stored at room temperature or in the refrigerator, depending on your preference.
Un shelled pistachios can be stored in the same way as shelled pistachios, but they will stay fresher for longer because the shell helps to protect the nut inside. They can also be stored in the freezer to extend their shelf life.
Pistachio flour should be stored in an airtight container or bag in a cool, dry place to keep it fresh and prevent it from absorbing odors from other foods. It can be stored at room temperature or in the refrigerator, depending on your preference.
To further extend the shelf life of pistachio flour, it can be stored in the freezer. When storing pistachio flour in the freezer, be sure to place it in a tightly sealed container or bag to prevent it from absorbing moisture or odors.
How do Pistachios Go Bad?
It is important to note that pistachios are high in fat, and they can become rancid if they are not stored properly. To prevent pistachios from becoming rancid, be sure to store them in a cool, dry place, and avoid exposing them to heat, moisture, or direct sunlight.
There are a few signs that pistachios may be rancid:
- Taste: Rancid pistachios will often have a bitter, off flavor that is distinct from their normal nutty taste.
- Smell: Rancid pistachios will typically have a pungent, unpleasant smell that is distinct from their normal nutty aroma.
- Appearance: Rancid pistachios may appear discolored or shriveled, and their shells may be cracked or broken.
If you are uncertain whether your pistachios are bad, you can test them by breaking open a shell and smelling the nut inside. If it smells rancid or off, it is best to discard the pistachios.