An ovular, versatile nut that provides a good source of protein and also contains fiber. Almonds make a crunchy, healthy snack and are often used to make a variety of desserts, salads and candies. They are used in marzipan, nougat, and many pastries. The young fruit of the almond tree is sometimes eaten whole when they are still green, before the inner shell has hardened ("green almonds").

Almonds contain almost no carbohydrates and are also gluten-free. They are also a rich source of Vitamin E and monounsaturated fat.

Almonds are used in Mogul style cooking in Northern India. Almonds are used in both sweet and savory dishes in India. Also used to thicken sauces and as a special garnish.


Other names: பாதாம், Almond, Badaam, బాదాం, বাদাম, बादाम, Badam
Translations: Mandeles, Migdolai, Migdale, Bademi, Hạnh nhân, Migdały, Amandelen, बादाम, Amêndoas, Миндаль, Αμύγδαλα, لوز, 아몬드, Mandle, Бадеми, Mga almendras, 杏仁, Ametlles, Mandeljni, Mandle, Mandorle, שקדים, Mandlar, Kacang almond, アーモンド, Amandes, Mandeln, Mandler, Mandler, Almendras, Мигдаль, Mantelit, Бадеми

Physical Description

The almond that we think of as a nut is technically the seed of the fruit of the almond tree, a glorious medium-size tree that bears fragrant pink and white flowers. Like its cousins, the peach, cherry and apricot trees, the almond tree bears fruits with stone-like seeds (or pits) within. The seed of the almond fruit is what we refer to as the almond nut.

Colors: Almonds are off-white in color, covered by a thin brownish skin

Selecting and Buying

Seasonality: january, february, march, april, may, june, july, august, september, opctober, november, december
Choosing: Almonds that are still in their shells have the longest shelf life. If purchasing these, look for shells that are not split, moldy or stained. Shelled almonds that are stored in an hermetically sealed container will last longer than those that are sold in bulk bins since they are less exposed to heat, air and humidity. If purchasing almonds in bulk bins, make sure that the store has a quick turnover of inventory and that the bulk containers are sealed well in order to ensure maximum freshness. Look for almonds that are uniform in color and not limp or shriveled. In addition, smell the almonds. They should smell sweet and nutty; if their odor is sharp or bitter, they are rancid.

If you want almonds with a roasted flavor and texture, choose those that have been "dry roasted" as they are not cooked in oil like their regular roasted counterparts. Yet, even when purchasing "dry roasted" almonds, it is important to read the label to be sure that no additional ingredients such as sugar, corn syrup or preservatives have been added.

Buying: You can buy almonds at your nearest grocery store.

Preparation and Use

Whole shelled almonds can be chopped by hand or can be placed in a food processor. If using a food processor, it is best to pulse on and off a few times, instead of running the blade constantly, as this will help ensure that you end up with chopped almonds rather than almond butter.

If you want to remove the almonds' skin, blanch them for a few of minutes until you notice the skin beginning to swell. Drain them and then rinse under cold water. Pinch the cooled almonds between your thumb and index finger, and the skin should slide right off the almond meat.

To roast almonds at home, do so gently--in a 160-170°F (about 75°C) oven for 15-20 minutes--to preserve the healthy oils. For more on the effect of high heat roasting on nuts, please see the following article.

Conserving and Storing

Since almonds have a high fat content, it is important to store them properly in order to protect them from becoming rancid. Store shelled almonds in a tightly sealed container, in a cool dry place away from exposure to sunlight. Keeping them cold will further protect them from rancidity and prolong their freshness. Refrigerated almonds will keep for several months, while if stored in the freezer, almonds can be kept for up to a year. Shelled almond pieces will become rancid more quickly than whole shelled almonds. Almonds still in the shell have the longest shelf life.


Global production of almonds is around 1.7 million tonnes, with a low of 1 million tonnes in 1995 and a peak of 1.85 million tonnes in 2002 according to Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) figures; world production of almonds was 1.76 million tonnes in 2006.[9] According to the FAO, major producers are the USA (715623 t, 41%), Spain (220000 t, 13%), Syria (119648 t, 7%), Italy (112796 t, 6%), Iran (108677 t, 6%) and Morocco (83000 t, 5%). Algeria, Tunisia and Greece each account for 3%, Turkey, Lebanon and China each account for 2%.[10] In Turkey, most of the production comes from the Datça Peninsula. In Spain, numerous commercial cultivars of sweet almond are produced, most notably the Jordan almond (imported from Málaga) and the Valencia almond.

In the United States, production is concentrated in California, with almonds being California's third leading agricultural product and its top agricultural export in 2008. California produces 80% of the world’s almonds[11] and 100% of the U.S. commercial supply. California exported almonds valued at 1.08 billion dollars in 2003, about 70% of total California almond crop.

History: The almond is a native to the Mediterranean climate region of the Middle East, eastward as far as the Indus. It was spread by humans in ancient times along the shores of the Mediterranean into northern Africa and southern Europe and more recently transported to other parts of the world, notably California, United States.

The wild form of domesticated almond grows in parts of the Levant; almonds must first have been taken into cultivation in this region. The fruit of the wild forms contains the glycoside amygdalin, "which becomes transformed into deadly prussic acid (hydrogen cyanide) after crushing, chewing, or any other injury to the seed."



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