Almonds - Drink Secrets



Prunus Dulcis. A species of tree originated from the Middle East that is grown mainly for the widely cultivated nut which grows upon it. The almond nut is not a true nut, but a drupe, the botanic name for a type of fruit, it is classed like this because unlike other nuts it has an outer hull and a hard shell with the seed inside. The almond seed, which is the part we eat, is commonly sold either shelled, unshelled or blanched, a process where the seed has been treated with hot water to soften the seedcoat, which is then removed to reveal the white embryo of the seed. Naturally, the almond tree originates from the mediterranean part of the Middle East, as far away as Pakistan, however, humans has since then spread the plant further into northern Africa and southern Europe and lately to other parts of the world, such as Californa.

Dates back to 3000 BC

The fruit of the wild form of almond contains the glycoside known as amygdalin which transforms into the deadly toxin known as hydrogen cyanide whenever the seed is damaged in any way. The domesticated type of almond is, of course, not toxic and is believed to be one of the earliest domesticated fruit trees with evidence shown to prove this as far back 3000 BC. The word “almond” is believed to be derived from the Old French word almande or alemande, which in turns originates from the Latin word amandola, which yet in turn is believed to originate from an old Greek word.


The three largest producers of almond in the world are USA, with 41% of the worlds production, Spain with 13% and Syria with 7%, all of the almond produced in the US are grown in Californa. There are two different forms of almond known as sweet, produced from trees with white flowers and the kernel of the fruit containing fixed oil and emulsion, and bitter, growing from trees with pink flowers and only has around 50% of the same fixed oil and emulsion as its sweet counterpart.


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