IFR Nutology: Peanuts

Spanish Peanuts

I've said this before, peanuts are very popular in our house! They are a delicious snack by themselves, as part of a snack, in a salad, and even with veggies. We add peanuts to dals and amtis and they make an appearance in sweet foods like peanut chikki and ladu. And, the American favorite peanut butter-jelly sandwich makes for a quick lunch at least once a week.

But did you know that peanuts are not really nuts? They are legumes from the Fabaceae family. More like peas, really! The peanut plant flowers above ground but develops its pods underground. That is why in many parts of the world, they are known as groundnuts.

Peanuts are known to contain the good monounsaturated fats and are a rich source of protein. Since they are a plant food, they contain no cholesterol. They are said to contribute to healthy brains with good blood circulation, mainly because they contain Vitamin B3, a memory boosting food. Studies have shown that including peanuts in one's diet reduces those nasty triglyceride levels. Peanuts are also rich in arginine which, according to Chinese medicine, is said to slow aging. Now don't all rush out and buy up all the peanuts in the world as this is a controversial topic!

Regardless, peanuts in small quantities make for a healthier snack. So include some peanuts with that apple you should eat every day!

Some resources:
Interesting Peanut Facts
Peanuts for the Heart
The Peanut Institute

Some recipes from other food blogs:
Spicy Nutty Cluster Beans
Faux sabudana khichadi
Groundnut Pachadi
Masala Groundnuts
Peanut Laddoos
and some outstanding pictures, too.


Sandy C. said...

YUM! Peanuts:) I cannot wait to introduce my daughter to peanuts. I just hope she steers clear of any reactions. I love to smear peanut butter on top of anything I would normally smear butter.

Srivalli said...

wow..thats a nice article...peanuts are our integral part of our lives too...check out my masala peanut...they are another wonderful way to eat them...

Rachna said...

do have a look at my peanut laddos recipe on soul food too....

Latha Narasimhan said...

I use peanuts as much as any other dal! All our kootus must have peanuts! Nice info on peanuts!:)

bee said...

i love the spanish ones. and i also love its use in thai cooking and in satay sauce, etc.

Asha said...

I like small Indian style Peanuts.
Happy Diwali Manisha, enjoy!:))

RP said...

Wow! That's one beautiful close-up of a peanut! And the butterflies. So pretty! We did a little butterfly experiment at home long time ago.. and I have it in my other blog. You may not be able to read, but check out the pictures. Link here.
Medha & creepy crawlies!! rrrrr... we should give her an award for holding those in her bare hands.
Kudos to you, manisha, for writing daily. It is a treat and I wish I had the same pace to comment on each of your posts. :)

Pelicano said...

I like peanuts too!

musical said...

I love peanuts too, especially the kind we get home, with the shells on, roasted well etc etc. I enjoy all the different types we get there, big, small, they are really done so well, perfectly roasted with that angeethi on the cart/pheri/rehdi :-D. Out of the ones here i only found the Trader Joe's and Planter's dry roasted peanuts to be tasting a bit similar. i add peanuts to some Marathi dishes and Thai dishes too, but no peanut butter for me!

Pooja V said...

i like roasted panuts & steamed & masala fried &...list goes on n on but my fav is daNyachi chutney.

priyadarshan said...

Happy Diwali

Anita said...

Peanuts - look how fast the monkeys came!
Love them - made a batch of boiled peanuts a week ago - yum.

Swaroopa said...

Peanuts article is very good. thanx for sharing.

MarysMom said...

My 5-year-old daighter, Mary, has started this thing when we go shopping where she grabs things that she fancies and puts them in the cart--- one of the first ones she grabbed is a bag of raw, unshelled peanuts. I've never cooked peanuts but I thought why not? I can go online and find out how to roast them. (One or two layers in a sheet pan, bake at 275F for 30-40 minutes seems to work the best.)
It was a big bag that Mary got so I only roast a batch at a time. Which reminds me, time to roast another batch!

Manisha said...

Sandy, I can't tell you how relieved I was when my daughter showed no signs of it, too! And I am known to dip a spoon into peanut butter and enjoy it by itself!

Srivalli and Rachna, I updated my post to add your recipes! Thanks!

Latha, I still have to make kootu. I'll come trolling your blog for recipes soon! And if they have peanuts, so much the better!

Bee, so Jai skins them? Or you buy them roasted and skinned? :-D Bring out the red wine, I tell you!

Asha, I concur most heartily! Most of the peanuts in the US are Spanish peanuts, which I am OK with if I buy them raw and roast them myself. Otherwise, it is desi peanuts for me, too!

RP, thank you so much for the link to your post on butterflies! It must have been wonderful to be a part of that with your daughter! Medha did that in both 1st grade and 2nd grade, so I didn't bother. But we can always do it next summer.

Kudos to Medha? No! Lots of Purell, followed by soap and hot water. Yeow! When I am in the yard, she's busy digging up worms and yes, she handles them without any protection.
Oh come to me, sweetie, she says. And then promptly dangles them in my face. I don't think the neighborhood has heard any other Mom scream for her life the way I do. Her favorite book last year was How to Eat Fried Worms. I had to sign a consent form to allow her to read that. We finally saw the movie last weekend.

As for writing daily, so far so good. I signed up for NaBloPoMo soon after NaBloWriMo ended. But I am still going with NaBloWriMo cos I haven't yet done my requisite 31 posts!

I did not sign up for NaNoWriMo because I don't think it is a big deal to write 50,000 words of junk in a month. Heck I write more junk in emails everyday! But to make a post and try to maintain quality? I am trying very hard. Forgive me if it slips, as it is not easy!

Please don't feel like you should comment. It's super to hear from you cos then I get nuggets like your butterfly project but I totally understand how it's tough to keep up with everything that's going on and the number of blogs and friends everyone has!

Pel, who was your favorite character?

Musy, I find that there is an odor in Planters. I don't know what they add to them! The peanuts roasted in their shells on an angeethi in sand are to die for! No peanut butter?! How come?!

Pooja V, oh yes! That is yum!

Priyadarshan, Happy Diwali to you too!

Anita, uh huh! I could do with some boiled peanuts soon!

Swaroopa, it's all about the sharing! Even though some people think otherwise. [sniff]

Marysmom, try this: chop some onion, some cilantro and green chillies, all really fine. Toss these together with roasted peanuts. Squeeze some fresh lemon juice over this mixture, along with some salt. Grab some coffee and some Kleenex, too. Settle down and enjoy!

Pelicano said...

Hee hee hee....ha! Peppermint Patty of course! ;-)

Tsk tsk tsk, such a nut you are! ;-)

Manisha said...

Pel, I am so glad you are not a tubelight!

kam said...

what is the recepie for making dry roasted peanuts liek the ones we get from India?