This biscotti recipe is great for pistachio lovers. The pistachio biscotti has a saltier taste than other sweeter biscotti, which makes it a great snack!
Pistachio trees (Pistacia vera – from the same genome as the cashew) must mature for up to six years before they bear fruit. The edible nut is actually the seed of the pistachio fruit that grows on a deciduous bush or tree that grows up to 30 feet in height. The fruit is a drupe, and the seed has a hard, whitish exterior shell that splits open when the fruit is ripe. Inside the pistachio seed has a skin and a lime green buttery flesh, with a distinctive flavor. A pistachio tree produces about 80 pounds of seeds and will bear fruit for decades. Most often the nuts are roasted and salted, but they can be eaten fresh, too. They are a favorite ingredient for ice cream, gelato, and baklava, and the oil pressed from pistachios is a prized culinary cooking oil.
Pistachio trees are traced back to the Middle East where the nuts have been harvested for food for 7000 thousand years, indeed being grown in the famed Hanging Gardens of Babylon. The noble pistachios appear in the Old Testament (Genesis 43:11) and are documented in Persia, Egypt, Mesopotamia and Greece, Turkey, years before the birth of Christ. Legend holds that the Queen of Sheba commanded that all of the nuts in the land be surrendered for the exclusive enjoyment of herself and her court. The pistachio has been grown in the United States for nearly 200 years, mostly in California. Now this region produces more than 500 million pounds of the nuts annually, making the U.S. the largest worldwide producer and the second largest consumer. China is the largest consumer of these tasty nuts, thought to have excellent curative qualities.
A fourth of a cup of pistachio nuts contains 212 calories and these vitamins and minerals:
Lutein and zeaxanthin, Vitamin B1, Vitamin B2, Vitamin B3, Vitamin B5, Vitamin B6, Folate, Vitamin C, Calcium, Iron, Magnesium, Manganese, Phosphorus, Potassium, Zinc