Nuts to You, China

Cook’s Illustrated is, far and away, the best food magazine around. It’s a no frills (and no advertising) read that doesn’t just offer recipes, but studies how to cook something. For example, they’ll bake fifty gingerbread cakes just to discover the best ingredients and technique. Maybe you’ve see their TV show, America’s Test Kitchen.

I was reading recently in the magazine of a scourge called pine mouth. It seems that some people experience a bitter, metallic taste in the days after eating the nuts that can last up to two weeks.

The cause of this has been a tough nut to crack (HA!), but now researchers believe that it’s from an inferior strain of pine nuts being imported from China. The Chinese, the report says, are mixing these with the good nuts.

China. That figures.

I’ve grown wary of the label Made in China. Is my coffee mug giving me a dose of lead along with the caffeine? Is that furry dog toy made from a dog? Is this hand sanitizer contaminating my hands?

So, what to do? Cook’s Illustrated says:

“Until the true source of pine mouth is understood, we recommend purchasing Middle-Eastern or European grown (and more expensive) pine nuts and refrigerating or freezing them in a well-sealed container to stave off rancidity.”

Easier said than done, as you’ll see from the label on this bottle of pine nuts in my pantry. Oh, well. Anyone for pesto?

3 thoughts on “Nuts to You, China

  1. Combine out of control capitalism with a flawed moral compass and this is what you get: dangerous exports like lead coated toys and tainted food products.

    We should be closely examining EVERYTHING that comes in from China, but that would be impossible due to the gigantic volume of stuff we buy from them.

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