National Walnut Day: Know its umpteen benefits and try these 4 salad recipesUpdated on: 17 May 2022, 15:19 pm IST
Despite the scorching heatwave, the summers are beneficial for all of us, not just due to the sunshine that we get but also because of the seasonal fruits and vegetables available in plenty. Not to forget, the nuts that we can have to keep us energized all day. Interestingly, it is National Walnut Day in the United States today and it falls on May 17 every year. So before we dive into a few delicious and healthy walnut recipes, let’s look at why adding walnuts to your diet may be beneficial.
Health benefits of walnuts
1. Packs a nutritional punch
They are an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids apart from offering heart-healthy fats, protein, fiber, and vitamins (including vitamin B6). You can have walnuts daily if you wish to reduce the risk of heart disease, improve brain health, ensure a healthy gut, and help in weight management. It also aids in maintaining a healthy immune system and plays a great role if someone is recovering from an ailment.
2. Easy to incorporate in meals
Munching walnuts isn’t the only way to enjoy this nutritious food. This crunchy nut is great for cooking too as it absorbs flavors and works well with sweet and savoury dishes. Pair it up with different fruits and veggies, dairy, and pieces of bread and cereals. There are several creative ways to eat walnuts and add them to your diet.
3. Easy to store
They can easily remain fresh at home if you keep them away from moisture, light, and warmth. Whether they are shelled or unshelled, store them in an airtight container and place it in the refrigerator.
Now let’s look at some healthy walnut recipes:
Mixed Bean, Walnut and Watercress Salad
1 yellow pepper, sliced
100g pack asparagus tips, halved
50g sun-dried tomatoes, sliced, plus 3 tablespoons oil
400g can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
400g can black beans, drained and rinsed
100g watercress, thick stalks removed
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
1. Preheat the oven to 200°C.
2. Place the pepper, asparagus, and walnuts on a baking tray and toss in 1 tablespoon of oil from the tomatoes, roast for 15-20 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, toss together the beans, sun-dried tomatoes, and watercress, and add in the pepper mixture.
4. Whisk the remaining 2 tablespoons of tomato oil with the vinegar, season, and toss into the salad.
California Walnut Rice Salad
2 cups cooked, chilled white and wild rice blend
2 cups baby arugula
1 1/2 cups walnuts, toasted and coarsely chopped
1/4 cup dried cherries, chopped
1/4 cup dried apricots, chopped
1/4 cup chopped ripe olives
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
How to make walnut lemon vinaigrette
1/3 cup olive oil
1/4 cup walnuts
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon honey
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2 cloves garlic, minced
1. Place all salad ingredients in a large bowl.
2. Puree all vinaigrette ingredients in a blender or small food processor.
3. Drizzle over salad and toss well to coat.
Citrus Beet Salad with Walnuts:
2 cups organic field greens, rinsed and spun dry
1/2 cup small-diced citrus, roasted red beet
2 tablespoons toasted walnuts
2 tablespoons blue cheese, crumbled
2 tablespoons balsamic honey vinaigrette
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon cracked black pepper
1. Place greens in a bowl and toss with dressing, salt, and pepper.
2. Top with beets, walnuts, and crumbled blue cheese.
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon curry powder
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1 teaspoon yellow mustard
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
Curried Quinoa Salad with Grapes and Walnut
1 cup quinoa
2 cups water
1 cup celery, diced
3/4 cup seedless grapes, halved
1/2 cup radishes, diced
1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
1/4 cup green onions, sliced
1. In a small bowl, add vinegar, curry powder, maple syrup, mustard, garlic powder, and salt. Whisk to combine.
2. In a medium saucepan over high heat, add quinoa and water; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to low and simmer for 13-15 minutes. Remove from heat; keep covered for 5 minutes. When done, fluff quinoa with a fork.
3. In a large bowl, add cooked quinoa, celery, grapes, radishes, walnuts, and green onions. Stir to combine all ingredients. Pour dressing into the bowl; toss to evenly combine.
4. Serve alongside dinner or pack as a light lunch. Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 week.
Try these awesome, unique and healthy walnut recipes, and make the most of it!