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Peeling pine nuts at home is difficult. The small, dense seeds of the Nordic tree with strong shells are almost impossible to break. There is no equipment for peeling pine nuts at home. The inhabitants of the northern regions know the secrets of peeling hard northern fruits. You can take their many years of experience into service.
How and how much to cook a pine cone to extract nuts
To clean the northern nuts, cedar shoots are harvested in late autumn. They should turn dark gray or brown and be covered with hard wood scales. This means that the nuts are ripe and can be eaten. It is possible to get nuts from a cone only if it is pre-boiled for half an hour, but not more than 40 minutes.
It is better to cook cedar shoots in the open air and in an old vessel. When cooked, they give off a large amount of resin and a strong aroma. The tarry coating from the sides of the pan is almost impossible to wash off.
Important! The acrid coniferous smell of cedar cones is difficult to remove indoors.
For cooking, take a saucepan of a suitable size. The collected cones are put on its bottom and filled with water. The liquid should completely cover the cedar fruit. On top, you need to apply a layer of grass or hay. This trick will help to get rid of excess resin, the shoots will not float to the surface.
The pan is put on fire, the water is brought to a boil. After the fire, it is necessary to reduce and cook the cones until a strong coniferous smell appears. It will take about half an hour. After the pan is removed from the fire, the shoots are spread on a dry surface to cool. As soon as the cedar fruits cool down, they begin to peel them.
Important! It will be easy to clean the boiled cedar shoots by hand.
How to peel pine nuts at home
The hard shells of the northern tree nuts are difficult to remove. There are several ways to split pine nuts at home. To do this, use various improvised tools and ingenuity. To make the nut shell more pliable, it is softened with boiling water, cold, and heat.
How to soften pine nuts with boiling water
Nuts are spread in a shallow bowl and poured with boiling water for 5-10 minutes. After the nuts are taken out and laid out on a dry towel, they are allowed to drain. Then you can start peeling them.
How to quickly peel pine nuts using the roasting method
You can fry nuts in the oven. After that, the shells are easier to clean, and the taste of the finished product will be much better.
You can peel pine nuts at home in the following way:
- Rinse the cedar seeds under running water, then do not wipe them off.
- Preheat the oven to + 150 Сᵒ.
- Put nuts on a baking sheet in one layer and send to the oven. They should be placed on the highest shelf in the oven.
- Pine fruits are simmered for about 15 minutes. The process should be controlled so as not to overcook them.
Once the shell is golden or light brown, the pine nuts can be removed. They are poured onto a towel and allowed to cool for half an hour. After this time, the nuts can be cleaned with a regular rolling pin. They are covered with a cloth and with an effort they begin to roll the rolling pin over the fruits, while the shell breaks easily.
How to peel pine nuts from the shell by freezing
First, put the hard nuts in the freezer to soften for a couple of hours. They are preliminarily placed in a plastic bag. The air from the bag must be released. Then the cellophane is tied tightly. After freezing, the nuts are easy to clean by crushing with a rolling pin. The shell becomes brittle and easily detaches from the core.
Important! Thawed pine nuts are immediately eaten. Their shelf life is no more than a week.
How to peel pine nuts using a temperature difference
For this method, first heat the pan on the stove. After that, fruits are poured into it without adding oil. Within 2-3 minutes, the seeds of the cedar cone are heated, stirring constantly. Do not fry the nuts for more than 5 minutes, they will lose their taste.
After the specified time, the product is transferred to a container filled with ice water. Keep it there for no more than 1 minute. After the contents of the cones are transferred to a towel, excess moisture is allowed to be absorbed.
Dried pine nuts can be placed in a plastic bag, deflated and tied tightly. Then you can crush the shell with a rolling pin. You should not press hard on the fruits, since the shell becomes fragile, you can damage the kernels.
How to manually chop pine nuts at home
In addition to heat treatment, for peeling hard nuts, various improvised tools are used that are in every household.
These can be such devices:
- rolling pin;
- garlic press;
If you get used to it, you can learn how to peel the seeds of the cone without spoiling the kernels.
It is easy to use a rolling pin to clean processed and fresh pine nuts at home. They are placed in a bag or on a towel, covering the top with a free edge. After they begin to roll out with a rolling pin. Cedar cones soaked in boiling water or frozen seeds are peeled with a minimum of effort. It takes force to peel raw nuts.
For this method of cleaning, take treated with boiling water or fresh seeds. They are laid out on a waffle towel for one half. The free end is covered with cedar fruits. Then they begin to hit with a hammer lightly. The main thing is not to overdo it, so as not to get each from the kernels and shell fragments.
Pliers, garlic press
If there are few nuts, they are cleaned with improvised tools: pliers or a garlic press. In this case, the cedar seeds are peeled one at a time. For this method, you need to be patient, since this work is painstaking.
It is better to pour boiling water over the seeds of a cedar cone, then dry them. After each fruit is clamped between parts of the pliers and begin to squeeze the handles until they crunch. This is done carefully and slowly, since it is easy to crush the nut completely.
A few cone seeds are loaded into the garlic press and the handles are squeezed. You should not do it abruptly, using maximum effort: there is a high probability of getting nut porridge. The press may well act as a peeling machine for pine nuts.
Machines for peeling pine nuts from shells
In modern conditions, large volumes of northern nuts are processed on special machines - pine nut huskers. With their help, you can clean up to 70 kg of raw materials per hour. Such machines can be seen at special processing factories, or you can make yourself.
The device for peeling pine nuts performs a full cycle of raw materials processing:
- crushes the shell;
- separates the nuclei;
- removes the film from the nut;
- weeds out debris from the finished product.
With the help of the pine nut peeling machine, you can clean seeds not only for home use, but also create a small business for the processing of raw materials from the northern tree.
How pine nuts are peeled on an industrial scale
Until recently, the entire process of peeling northern walnuts was done by hand. Now this is done by powerful machines capable of processing several tons of raw materials per day. All of these devices work in different ways.
Here are some basic principles of how a pine nut cleaner works:
- Mechanical method - the seeds are split in a special container using a pine nut press cleaner, after which they are poured into another container for further processing.
- Vacuum method - raw materials are subjected to pressure drops in a special container, after which the husk is easy to clean.
- Crushing and sizing method - at the first stage, the raw material is subjected to mechanical action by a peeling machine for pine nuts, after which it is poured into separate containers for complete cleaning.
- Exposure to liquid nitrogen - the seeds are heated, after which they are dipped in liquid nitrogen, the shell easily crumbles without unnecessary effort.
At the last stage of production under factory conditions, cedar fruits are sorted by size and packed in an airtight container in order to preserve their taste for a long time.
The only drawback is that the equipment often spoils the kernels themselves, leaving their particles in the total mass of the finished product. Such crushed seeds are also sold, only at a lower cost than whole seeds.
Processing of nuts after cleaning
Pine nut kernels must be graded in accordance with government food standards.
Packages of premium northern nuts contain chipped particles (no more than 10% of the total weight of the finished product). In the product of the first grade, the content of crushed kernels is allowed no more than 15%. Poor quality nut packages may contain up to 80% crushed kernels.
Sorting and grading of cedar fruits takes place on special equipment. After cleaning, the resulting kernels are dried and fried in dryers to remove excess moisture and prevent the growth of mold and pathogenic bacteria.
Important! At the final stage, the kernels of northern nuts are packed in vacuum packaging, which preserves the taste of the product for a long time.
You can clean pine nuts at home using a variety of tools and tricks. After heat treatment and freezing, the product is easy to clean, but it cannot be stored for more than a week. Being in the shell, nuts retain their beneficial properties and taste for a long time. It is recommended to clean them immediately before use.
With the help of machines, large quantities of nuts are processed in a short time. The finished product has a long shelf life due to high-quality drying and vacuum packaging.