One Bite: fuzzy green almonds | Bleader

One Bite: fuzzy green almonds



Fresh almonds
This time of year it's not uncommon to see folks standing in the produce sections of certain internationally inclined groceries puzzling over these fuzzy, green ovoids, perhaps wondering if there's a planet of extraterrestrial castrati that sacrificed them for our snacking pleasure. No, these are immature almonds, which in the Middle East are commonly dipped in salt and nibbled whole.

When almonds are gussied up in habanero-BBQ or wasabi-soy frippery it's difficult to imagine that they aren't nuts but rather drupes, related to plums and cherries.

green almond jelly

It's even harder to fathom once you come across a closed container of greens. Open them and give a whiff—they have a strong milky-sweet aroma that dissipates quickly and does nothing to prepare you for the taste. Their downy skin covers a firm but yielding flesh that protects the inner seed, which at this stage is a clear jelly. They have a grassy, tart, herbaceous flavor that's totally unlike their mature form. The great food writer Regina Schrambing documented what some ace chefs like Thomas Keller and Judi Rodgers can do with them, and you have a very short window to try them yourself. They're in stock at Harvestime Foods and Andy's Fruit Ranch, but in a few more weeks they'll be gone.