With flavours mild, creamy, and a bit earthy – not to mention loaded with nutrients that support heart, brain, and gut health – California Walnuts are a great addition to our daily meals. Research suggests that a handful (28g) of these wonder nuts are packed with omega-3 ALA (2.5g), an essential fatty acid, protein (4g) and fiber (2g). While most prefer snacking on these as is or enjoying these in a trail mix, Chef Shipra Khanna loves taking the creative route and using walnuts and their good fats in more ways than one can imagine – her way of making everyday healthy!
Celebrity Chef Shipra Khanna
Curious much? Read on to discover delicious (read easy) ideas to enjoy California walnuts by Celebrity Chef Shipra Khanna.
Walnut butter, anyone?
Up the health quotient of your usual bread and butter breakfast by replacing your usual butter with a generous dollop of homemade walnut one. A vegan-friendly spread, this nutty butter is easy to make: grind roasted walnuts in a food processor until creamy and finish it with a pinch of salt. You can even add cocoa powder or maple syrup to it for flavour variation.
Throw in a handful (or two) of walnuts or add a fine paste of these into your curry and see the incredible amount of pizzazz it adds to the dish. This will not only add texture and flavour but also a nutritional boost that your body will be thankful for upon relishing.
Add it to your flatbreads
You may have savoured walnuts in pastries, breads, and confectionaries, but have you ever tried these wonder nuts in a desi flatbread like roti, paratha, or naan? Adding walnuts can transform a basic flatbread into a flavoursome and healthy dish. There are two ways to do this: you can either add powdered roasted walnut while kneading the dough or whip up a delicious mixture of finely chopped walnuts, herbs and spices and use it as a stuffing for your flatbread.
Coat your proteins
Breadcrumbs are a key ingredient for coating proteins such as fish or chicken. But if you’re focused on eating healthy, I’d suggest you look for substitutes that will lend similar flavour and texture. Begin with crushed walnuts since they are naturally gluten-free and provide the necessary crunch your breaded chicken or fish filet needs.
Chicken, Curry and Walnuts Croquettes
Top your salad, pasta, or soup
Swap the croutons in your salad, pasta, or soup with a handful of roasted walnuts for some extra crunch and a nutritional punch. And if you’re in the mood for experimenting further, drizzle some olive oil over the walnuts and a generous sprinkling of a spice mix of your choice. Think peri peri, za’atar, or even a desi spice mix like the Gujarati pickle masala. Once coated, spread them on a baking sheet and toast in the oven for approx 10 minutes at 177°C.
In addition to this, know your food – shop for the ingredients, spend some time, if not all, in cooking and presenting it in an appealing manner. You’ll be surprised how wonderfully these simple changes can help you in making everyday healthy.