Are you like the squirrel?

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Foraging for food is becoming popular again, I personally don’t think it was ever out of style but I have noticed more people having that conversation on blogs etc……..when my husband and I go for hike in the woods we are always looking for free sources of food because there truly is an abundance everywhere.    I hosted my host son from Belarus named Stas for two years in a row he often shared with me how his family went into the woods every year to forage for mushrooms it was a past time.  My husband has family in Sweden who have a beautiful lake house and they catch tons of crayfish every year I have yet to know how they preserve them I need to ask that question.  Recently we came upon a pecan tree and thought we’d struck “Payday” when unfortunately there was little left and well I decided we would just crack some brazil nuts that I had already purchased and seal them and freeze them for the winter.

Nuts add great value to our diets, I realize there are people who are allergic to them however not one person in my household is but I do contend with a family that for the most part consider themselves “Non-Nut Eaters” however what they don’t know does not hurt them.  One way to overcome this is to ground the nuts up into nut dust basically they don’t know it’s in the cookie they are just impressed with the flavor but they are getting extra protein in their diets and hopefully it helps balance some of the sugar in the cookie or the sweet bread I have prepared.

I love all nuts but pecans are my personal favorite…..I think brazil nuts go fabulous in oatmeal cookies, I love pecans on top of sweet potatoes at Thanksgiving Dinner, and I love a fresh walnut right out of the shell.    I love roasted chestnuts by the fire in the winter just like the song……I think when we eat nuts they give us a sense of well-being because they are often chock full of the good fats and protein and they are nutritionally dense which is so healthy for you.   I think this sense of well-being and knowledge is innate with our ancestors because they have been eating nuts for eons.

Read the excerpt below from the article “Health Benefits of Nuts”

Researchers found that people who eat nuts regularly have lower risks of heart disease. In 1996, the Iowa Women’s Healthy Study found that women who ate nuts >4 times a week were 40% less likely to die of heart disease. Two years later, another study conducted by the Harvard School of Public Health found a similar result in another group of women subjects. Furthermore, potential heart health benefits of nuts were also found among men. In 2002, the Physician’s Health Study found that men who consumed nuts 2 or more times per week had reduced risks of sudden cardiac death.

The funny thing is that I didn’t like nuts all that much growing up so the good news is that our taste changes…”Thank Goodness!” 🙂 or I would have so missed out.  Also we traditionally use nuts in sweets or snacks in America but you can toss them into salads, sprinkle on top of potatoes, mix them in with rice pilaf, the uses are too numerous to mention here.

Nuts also help you to be prepared for the winter like the squirrel – we laugh at squirrels and their antics or they are a nuisance to us getting into our chicken feed but either way squirrels are doing what they are biologically meant to do which is to fatten up and prepare for the winter.  Nuts help sustain squirrels through the winter and they can help sustain your household as well.

The nut cracker shown above in the picture I ordered with a gift card I received for my birthday on Amazon.   Apparently Martha Stewart recommends it according to a review on the site so it must be good!  Right?  It works great with Pecans it takes a lot of work with Brazil nuts so sometimes I just have to break out the old  traditional cracker called “elbow grease”. 😉

The bad news nuts are very expensive at the grocery store so any affordable, fresh source you can find take advantage of it!  Anytime you can find a free or cheap source of nuts you are polishing your frugality and sustainable living skills and its great exercise.  I am heading to the farmers market this morning so I will let y’all know if I find anything.

As always thanks for stopping by our Lil’ Suburban Homestead!  Hope you all get out on this beautiful October Day!

my siggie :)

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