Almonds: Recipes, History, Culture Book Review


March 2, 2014 by Joanne T Ferguson

Almond-pesto-pasta-cookbook-review-recipe-whatsonthelistI am soooooooooooooooo E-X-C-I-T-E-D to being sharing this Almonds: Recipes, History, Culture Book Review!

I “thought” I knew quite a bit about almonds previously, but when Almonds: Recipes, History, Culture by Barbara Bryant & Betsy Fentress: Recipes by Linda Balslev courtesy of Arbon Publishing came my way, WHAT an almond journey I was in for!
Almonds-cookbook-review-whatsonthelistDo you know what Australia’s fastest growing agricultural export is?

I didn’t know.

Did you know almonds are one of the “healthiest snacks” in the world?

I did know that!

Did you know Australia is now the second largest producers of almonds; overtaking Spain in 2013; Australia produced “more than 70,00 tonnes” of almonds?

I didn’t know that.

Is this a cookbook?

Yes and contains recipes (and wonderful photos I might add) from all around the world utilizing almonds in every form: sliced, slivered, roasted (my favorite), ground, blanched and green.

I enjoyed how the cookbook took me on a history lesson of almonds but also how the author Barbara shares her person story of when she first fell in love with almonds.

While reading Almonds: Recipes, History, Culture, it was like the authors (and mouthwatering photos) actually spoke to me!

There are over 60 recipes and over 125 color photographs and art reproductions from the world’s most famous museums included in Almonds: Recipes, History, Culture.

Please tell me I am not the only one who “hears” cookbooks and food photos talking to me?


I liked how almond paste, almond oil, almond butter, almond milk and almond extracts were covered; what they are made from, their uses and almond “hints and tips”; very useful indeed!

Did you know almonds are the most versatile nut in the world other than me?

This Almonds: Recipes History Culture Book Review is broken down into:
Starters & Snacks, Salads & Vegetables, Pastas & Grains, Land & Sea and Baked Goods & Desserts.

JUST viewing the around the world recipes (and viewing the photos) MADE me hungry!

Trust me, it was by process of elimination (NOT easy) that I decided to recreate Spiced Roasted Almonds with Rosemary and Lemon which is “the prefect hors d’oeuvre snack” in turn was used in Bucatini with Pesto Trapanese; pesto trapenese originated in the Tripani harbor of Sicily.
Almonds-roasted-whatsonthelistWhile the recipe suggested that spaghetti may be used instead of bucatini, I had some bucatini in the pantry.

Bucatini is also known as perciatelli; think of it like a spaghetti-like tubular pasta that has a whole through the center.

Bucatini comes from the Italian word that means hole.
Tubular-pasta-whatsonthelist Recipe-cookbook-pasta-pesto-almonds-whatsonthelistDid you know that?

I didn’t, but am glad we all worldwide can learn together today!

Do you ever feel that recipes “jump” out of a cookbook at you?

Please tell me I am not the only one!

The pesto sauce was divine; using fresh herbs and veggies from my garden which was my contribution to the dish.

It was interesting to learn about how pesto genovese was introduced, but you will have to purchase Almonds: Recipes, History, Culture to find out; recommend
you do!
Pesto-almond-pasta-whatsonthelist Pasta-pesto-almonds-whatsonthelistWhat were some of the other recipes included in you Almonds: Recipes, History, Culture Book Review, I “hear” you ask?

Some of my favorites:

Starters & Snacks : Smoked Trout Mousse with Almonds, Almond Stuffed Dates with Bacon and White Gaspacho with Green Grapes and Almonds. YUM!

Salads & Vegetables : Winter Kale and Quinoa Salad with Carrots and Raisins, Zucchini Carpaccio with Toasted Almonds and White Peach (LOVE white peaches!!!) and Prosciutto (LOVE Prosciutto!!!) Salad with Green Almonds! (LOVE almonds too!!!)

Pastas & Grains : Other than the recipes I chose, Soba Noodles with Spicy Almond Butter Sauce and Farrotto with Almonds, Shiitake Mushrooms with Balsamic Vinegar-Glazed Radicchio.

Do you what what Farro is and have you cooked with it too?

Land & Sea : Pulled Pork with Red Mole, Mughlai Chicken Biryani and Catalan Fish Stew with Chorizo, Fennel, and Almond Picada. YUM, YUM, YUM!

Baked Goods & Desserts : I could “almost” be a food tease and suggest you will need to turn to page 129, 134, 139 and page page 143, but I can already “hear” what some of you reading this would say!

Almond and Apricot Skillet Bread, Salted Almond Butter Cookies and Chocolate Chunks, Pear and Almond Frangipane Tart and Chocolate-Amaretto Torte.

I couldn’t just limit my Baked Goods & Desserts to three!

Did you think using almonds were so versatile?

Do you have a favorite almond dish or recipe to share?

If you enjoyed this post, feel free to FOLLOW via Twitter, LIKE via Facebook, SHARED via Google+ and LOVED being PINNED…so PLEASE do on Pinterest!

All comments, likes, shares and pins MAKE MY DAY!

The words and thoughts are my own and have not been influenced in any way just because this Almonds: Recipes, History, Culture Cookbook came my way via Arbon Publishing as a courtesy!

I thoroughly enjoyed sharing my Almonds Recipes, History, Culture Book Review with you and also hope you enjoyed it too!

33 thoughts on “Almonds: Recipes, History, Culture Book Review

  1. Awesome! I definitely having pasta for dinner tonight after seeing those gorgeous photos of your dish. Yum!! I had no idea almonds were so versatile, but now that I think about it, of course they are. My fav is still dark choc coated almonds tho I think! 😉

  2. Mmm smoked almonds are such a tasty snack and I often will eat almonds in trail mix with dried fruit and dark chocolate. But I seldom cook with them except in bread. Do you ever soak them first? I tried it once but then I left them out afterwards and they went mouldy!

  3. Erin says:

    Yummo! Almond paste, tamari almonds. Two of my favs.

    I bet that was a greeat book to read!

  4. dwayland says:

    Beautiful photos and I love the way those almonds look. Sounds like I need to check out that book. Thanks!

  5. Fantastic recipe, a definite must make on my list!

  6. I’m a ‘nut’ fan though I haven’t used nuts in my pasta recipes yet. This is a great post with terrific information. Thanks so much.

  7. This dish is gorgeous, Joanne! I love almonds, they are my favorite nut. I have a handful for a snack just about every day! I am definitely looking into this cookbook. It looks phenomenal!

  8. Looks like a great read and never think about using almonds in my pasta but will give it a try!

  9. Awesome recipe share thanks so much, a MUST try

  10. theninjabaker says:

    Love learning food fun facts! Australia and almonds…who knew? How great, too, to have so many recipes with almonds =)

  11. I adore bucatini! I’ve enjoyed your almond theme, Joanne!

  12. That pasta looks SO good Joanne! I have been making something similar and it’s so good for the current slightly chilly air 🙂

    • Thanks Lorraine for your lovely comments that brightened my day! I have never had roasted almonds in pasta like this before…roasted cashews, pistachios, pine nuts, but never almonds….YUM!

  13. Fantastic Recipes Packed with Flavor! Love it!!

  14. glamorous glutton says:

    Sounds like some great recipes. GG

  15. peacefulnightdove says:

    *DROOL* !!!!!! Omg, what a GORGEOUS dish!! 😀 Hopping on a plane and I’ll be right there! Save me some!! 😀 (Kelly@ )

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Joanne T. Ferguson

Passionate Home Cook who tries to inspire one recipe and one event at time!


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