Sunday, December 18, 2011

10 loves: walnuts

10 Walnut Loves

It is a common trait of my generation - a love of top ten lists.  Did it all begin with David Letterman?  Now they are everywhere: news reports, travel guides, holiday sales, marketing launches, etc.  And our little blog is no different!

This walnut top ten is inspired by a recent gift from our family's DF, Dorothy Quilty.  We came to know Dottie many years ago through DF's Woody, Jen and Anne.  She is a neighbor of ours, living in Winchester for decades with her sisters.  She lives alone now, and we have weekly visits with lots of storing telling, book and movie shares and some produce swaps in summer.  She is an inspiration - a strong, brave, intelligent and witty woman with a love of reading, current events and a little gossip here and there.  This one is a 'shout-out' to her and her amazing spirit!

10. heart healthy walnuts Take a quick peek at this interesting article from Dr. Andrew Weil about the benefits of walnuts.

9. sugared walnuts Leave it to Martha Stewart to have a quick and easy recipe for this classic - great for salads and to munch with cocktails. I also like to quick-toast mine in the oven.

8. blue-cheese walnut cream  Another party classic from Martha, I thin mine with a little cream or 1/2 and 1/2. It is great on top of grape halves or spread on crostini.

7. cranberry, walnut quinoa salad I fell in love with Quinoa this fall. Shout-out to Denise Costello, our local fit foodie, for inspiring me to make this a pantry staple!

6. walnut butter cookies  My kids love making these 'horseshoe' shaped cookies.  Claire has an Italian version, Crumiri, on her blog!

5. walnut cookie molds I covet these - aren't they adorable?  Don't you want to spread a little Nutella between two halves? Or perhaps a little chocolate ganache?

4. salad with pears, pomegranate & walnuts  This recipe from NPR's site gives an alternative recipe for sugared walnuts, but Martha's (see above) is easier. I make a version of this every Christmas.

3. walnut marinated goat cheese  I am a big goat cheese fan and this article was an inspiration for some of our homemade holiday gift giving.

2. walnut-arugula pesto  Yum!  Calling all arugula fans!  This pesto is so versatile; use it on pasta, pizza, sandwiches and to make an amazing potato salad!

1. Our newly, inherited Nut Cracker - Thank you, Dottie!  We love it!

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