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Almonds

Almond
Prunus dulcis - Köhler–s Medizinal-Pflanzen-250.jpg
1897 illustration
Ametllesjuliol.jpg
Almond tree with ripening fruit. Majorca, Spain
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Rosids
Order: Rosales
Family: Rosaceae
Genus: Prunus
Subgenus: Amygdalus
Species: P. dulcis
Binomial name
Prunus dulcis
(Mill.) D. A. Webb
Synonyms
Almonds
Mandorle sgusciate.jpg
Nutritional value per 100 g (3.5 oz)
Energy 2,408 kJ (576 kcal)
21.69 g
Starch 0.74 g
Sugars 3.89 g
0.00 g
Dietary fiber 12.2 g
49.42 g
Saturated 3.731 g
Monounsaturated 30.889 g
Polyunsaturated 12.070 g
21.22 g
Tryptophan 0.214 g
Threonine 0.598 g
Isoleucine 0.702 g
Leucine 1.488 g
Lysine 0.580 g
Methionine 0.151 g
Cystine 0.189 g
Phenylalanine 1.120 g
Tyrosine 0.452 g
Valine 0.817 g
Arginine 2.446 g
Histidine 0.557 g
Alanine 1.027 g
Aspartic acid 2.911 g
Glutamic acid 6.810 g
Glycine 1.469 g
Proline 1.032 g
Serine 0.948 g
Vitamins
Vitamin A equiv.
(0%)
1 μg
1 μg
Vitamin A 1 IU
Thiamine (B1)
(18%)
0.211 mg
Riboflavin (B2)
(85%)
1.014 mg
Niacin (B3)
(23%)
3.385 mg
Pantothenic acid (B5)
(9%)
0.469 mg
Vitamin B6
(11%)
0.143 mg
Folate (B9)
(13%)
50 μg
Choline
(11%)
52.1 mg
Vitamin C
(0%)
0 mg
Vitamin D
(0%)
0 μg
Vitamin E
(175%)
26.2 mg
Vitamin K
(0%)
0.0 μg
Minerals
Calcium
(26%)
264 mg
Iron
(29%)
3.72 mg
Magnesium
(75%)
268 mg
Manganese
(109%)
2.285 mg
Phosphorus
(69%)
484 mg
Potassium
(15%)
705 mg
Sodium
(0%)
1 mg
Zinc
(32%)
3.08 mg
Other constituents
Water 4.70 g

Percentages are roughly approximated using US recommendations for adults.
Source: USDA Nutrient Database
Oil, vegetable, almond
Nutritional value per 100 g
Energy 3,701 kJ (885 kcal)
50 g
Saturated 5 g
Monounsaturated 31.6 g
Polyunsaturated 15 g
0
12.6 g
Vitamins
Vitamin E
(261%)
39.2 mg
Vitamin K
(7%)
7.0 μg
Minerals
Iron
(0%)
0 mg

Percentages are roughly approximated using US recommendations for adults.

The almond (Prunus dulcis, syn. Prunus amygdalus) is a species of tree native to the Middle East, the Indian Subcontinent and North Africa.

"Almond" is also the name of the edible and widely cultivated seed of this tree. Within the genus Prunus, it is classified with the peach in the subgenus Amygdalus, distinguished from the other subgenera by corrugations on the shell (endocarp) surrounding the seed.

The fruit of the almond is a drupe, consisting of an outer hull and a hard shell with the seed, which is not a true nut, inside. Shelling almonds refers to removing the shell to reveal the seed. Almonds are sold shelled or unshelled. Blanched almonds are shelled almonds that have been treated with hot water to soften the seedcoat, which is then removed to reveal the white embryo.

The almond is a deciduous tree, growing 4–10 m (13–33 ft) in height, with a trunk of up to 30 cm (12 in) in diameter. The young twigs are green at first, becoming purplish where exposed to sunlight, then grey in their second year. The leaves are 3–5 inches long, with a serrated margin and a 2.5 cm (1 in) petiole. The flowers are white to pale pink, 3–5 cm (1–2 in) diameter with five petals, produced singly or in pairs and appearing before the leaves in early spring. Almond grows best in Mediterranean climates with warm, dry summers and mild, wet winters. The optimal temperature for their growth is between 15 and 30 °C (59 and 86 °F) and the tree buds have a chilling requirement of 300 to 600 hours below 7.2 °C (45.0 °F) to break dormancy.

Almonds begin bearing an economic crop in the third year after planting. Trees reach full bearing five to six years after planting. The fruit matures in the autumn, 7–8 months after flowering.


Top producers of almonds (with shell) in 2013
Country
Production
(million tonnes)
 USA
1.8
 Australia
0.2
 Spain
0.2
 Morocco
0.1
 Iran
0.1
World
2.9

  • In Greece, ground blanched almonds are used as the base material in a great variety of desserts, usually called amygdalota (αμυγδαλωτά). Because of their white colour, most are traditionally considered "wedding sweets" and are served at wedding banquets. In addition, a soft drink known as soumada is made from almonds in various regions.
  • In Iran, green almonds are dipped in sea salt and eaten as snacks on street markets; they are called chaqale bâdam. Also sweet almonds are used to prepare a special food for babies, named harire badam. Almonds are added to some foods, cookies, and desserts, or are used to decorate foods. People in Iran consume roasted nuts for special events, for example, during New Year (Nowruz) parties.
  • In Italy, the bitter almonds from apricots are the base for amaretti (almond macaroons), a common dessert. Traditionally, a low percentage of bitter almonds (10–20%) is added to the ingredients, which gives the cookies their bitter taste (commercially, apricot kernels are used as a substitute for bitter almonds). Almonds are also a common choice as the nuts to include in torrone. In Apulia and Sicily, pasta di mandorle (almond paste) is used to make small soft cakes, often decorated with jam, pistachio, or chocolate. In Sicily, almond milk is a popular refreshing beverage in summer.
  • In Morocco, almonds in the form of sweet almond paste are the main ingredient in pastry fillings, and several other desserts. Fried blanched whole almonds are also used to decorate sweet tajines such as lamb with prunes. A drink made from almonds mixed with milk is served in important ceremonies such as weddings and can also be ordered in some cafes. Southwestern Berber regions of Essaouira and Souss are also known for amlou, a spread made of almond paste, argan oil, and honey. Almond paste is also mixed with toasted flour and among others, honey, olive oil or butter, anise, fennel, sesame seeds, and cinnamon to make sellou (also called zamita in Meknes or slilou in Marrakech), a sweet snack known for its long shelf life and high nutritive value.
  • In Indian cuisine, almonds are the base ingredients of pasanda-style and Mughlai curries. Badam halva is a sweet made from almonds with added coloring. Almond flakes are added to many sweets (such as sohan barfi), and are usually visible sticking to the outer surface. Almonds form the base of various drinks which are supposed to have cooling properties. Almond sherbet or sherbet-e-badaam, is a popular summer drink. Almonds are also sold as a snack with added salt.
  • In Israel almonds are topping tahini cookie or eaten as a snack.
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Wikipedia

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