Photo: Jo Peattie (Flickr)
Going Nuts For Walnuts
America’s bats are in trouble. In parts of the Northeast U.S., their numbers have decreased by 97 percent. Now, researchers are bracing for the possibility of massive population declines in the Midwest as well. Harvest Public Media’s Tim Lloyd reports that losing a big part of Mother Nature’s pest control crew could prove costly for farmers.
Walnuts are difficult to prepare, with their hard green hulls and black goo surrounding the nutmeat. Commercial walnut sellers have pricey equipment that hull the nuts, but forager Tracy Branam does it the old-fashioned way: he runs over the walnuts with his truck.
Chef Daniel Orr’s recipe for Black Walnut And Maple Butter features grade B maple syrup from Burton’s Maplewood Farm, which has a more robust flavor than grade A syrup. It also includes lemon juice and zest. “The acidity will cut a little bit of the sweetness of the maple syrup,” he says.
Then he prepares a vinaigrette dressing that honors his father Lefty. It is simple, elegant and easy to make. It is brilliant from late fall through the spring, especially on salads with a balance of sweet and salty components. Think pears and blue cheese.
News Stories In The Podcast:
- Speed Doesn’t Equal Transparency With New Farm Bill
- Possible Pet Food Contamination Can Sicken Humans Too
- Don’t Sweet Talk Me: Sugary Drinks In The News
Stories On This Episode
America's bats are in trouble. In parts of the Northeast U.S., their numbers have decreased by 97. What does this mean for farmers?
Fall is a special time of year for foragers like Tracy Branam. These days he's on the hunt for persimmons and walnuts.
I foraged for these walnuts at my house in Columbus, Indiana. Now it's time to turn them into a taste topping for pancakes!
This walnut vinaigrette recipe is in honor of my father Lefty, who taught me how to forage for and prepare these delicious nuts.