Random Ramblings

Random Ramblings: Personal observations on a wide variety of subjects. Photographs of creatures and things that are taken on seeing the unusual as well as everyday things.

Cashew nut – poison

Cashews are expensive and this is most probably because of two main reasons:

    • firstly the cashew is not a true nut but grows beneath a sort of bulbous fruit
    • secondly the cashew forms in a sort of kidney shaped vessel that contains a thick, poisonous liquid

When the cashews are gathered the outer casing and liquid filling has to be separated from the actual ‘cashew nut.’ If any part of the outer layer or liquid remains on the cashew then it becomes poisonous to eat. To make it safe it is cooked at high temperatures, the juice becomes thick and oozes out and the outer layer is then peeled off. The cashew should never be eaten raw as there is a risk of consuming the remaining poison that is left on the ‘nut’ and even small amounts can cause nasty side effects. The consumption of a small amount of this poison allegedly leads to a whole array of symptoms. It is claimed that these range from nausea, sickness, diarrhoea, headaches, pains and even various skin rashes. When purchasing cashews it may be wise, especially if they are pale to bake or boil them before eating … just to be on the safe side.

 

Cashew growing Cashew

Cashew nuts - raw

Cashew nuts – purchased as raw

Although the top part of the fruit is almost shaped like a pear it is often called a cashew apple. It is the fruit of a very small evergreen tree that grows in South America especially around Brazil and it is often known by its Portuguese name of Caju. The cashew apple is non-poisonous and very sweet, it ripens extremely quickly making it excellent for jam and jelly making.

3 comments:

Ann said...

Cashews are my favorite. I didn't know all that about them though. How interesting.

Grampy said...

Learned something new again today. Thank You. I thought it was a nut. And the problems are very serious with them. We do eat them around the holidays.

Kloggers/Polly said...

I have seen a skin rash caused through cashews and quite surprisingly no amount of ointments or lotions appeared to help reduce it in any way. It was purely by chance that eventually it was narrowed down to eating cashews straight from the bag that had caused it. Up until then, the person which had been affected by them had always assumed that cashews purchased from the shops were safe.
I now always bake them before popping any into my mouth!