pine nuts !!!

Old Jan 30th 2022, 3:47 pm
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Default pine nuts !!!

Both keen amateur cooks here......this recipe we wanted to do on Saturday inc 'pine nuts' (first time we needed them in PT) searched everywhere, only found them in 'Continente' @ euro13.99 per 100g inTesco in the UK they are £3.80ish for 100g...............and they have to import them into the UK at that ! as far as I know some pine nuts are native to PT ? but even if they do have to be imported here from China/Korea etc, if they come through the Suez then PT is nearer than the UK.............. dont get me wrong it is not a 'deal breaker' as to whether we stay here long term or not just came as a bit of a shock........!!
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Old Jan 30th 2022, 3:47 pm
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Default Re: pine nuts !!!

we used 'crushed walnuts' instead btw
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Old Jan 30th 2022, 4:06 pm
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Default Re: pine nuts !!!

Cashews, Pecan and Hazelnuts are all good replacements.
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Old Jan 30th 2022, 5:29 pm
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Default Re: pine nuts !!!

I find all dried fruits to be expensive in Portugal. Understandable when national, less so when imported.

We have a few Pinha Mansa on our land, but they produce few pinhões - although those they do are really tasty and couldn't be replaced in flavour by any of the nuts mentioned. We also buy local walnuts before Christmas which knock the socks off those you can buy in the supermarket. I've planted a few Black walnuts, but I don't think I'll be around to enjoy their bounty!

As a complete aside, have you tried bread or cakes made from Acorns (Bolota)? It makes such products dark and dense, but it is rich in potassium, calcium and magnesium, things which wheat lacks. Given the vast number of acorns produced each year, finding a recipe to make use of acorn flour (even as an additive) seems a good idea - and for those who are gluten-intolerant, it's another option.
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Old Jan 31st 2022, 12:19 am
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Default Re: pine nuts !!!

Pine nuts are grown and harvested in Portugal.
A neighbor of mine has a few big trees they harvest every year.
Another neighbor put in several hundred trees and they're just beginning to produce.

So I don't know why they're so expensive in the shop.
The nuts have to be extracted and processed. I suspect that it's just not an item they sell much of, probably most of the crop is exported to areas where there is more demand.
And of course, at those prices the nuts are unlikely to catch on anytime soon.
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Old Jan 31st 2022, 8:22 am
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Default Re: pine nuts !!!

If you have ever tried extracting and processing pine nuts, you will know exactly why they are so expensive. Enormously labour intensive and the trees have periodic crops, with decent crops only being produced every 3 to 5 years.... aside from which, you're in for a long wait after planting before your trees produce their first crop!
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Old Jan 31st 2022, 9:39 am
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Default Re: pine nuts !!!

Hiya Shanome, yeah I appreciate the complexity of the process (as much as is possible to do so) and the unpredictability of the crop, but my real point was the cost difference between the UK and PT, same nuts, same process, but wildly different prices, I know its swings and roundabouts so to speak, some things are a lot cheaper here, some things a lot dearer, several examples spring to mind, but that would be going slightly off topic from 'pine nuts' though which so far have had the biggest percentage price difference food wise compared to the UK, that we have found so far anyway.
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Old Jan 31st 2022, 9:55 am
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Default Re: pine nuts !!!

I could be wrong but I almost get the impression that the price of pine nuts have recently spiked in Portugal because I had a similar experience when wanting to buy pine nuts for a Porcetta recipe. I have regularly bought pine nuts in the past in Portugal but this was the first time I'd actually specifically taken close notice of the price (probably because it was inflated so much past what I expected the price to be) and I ended up using Pistachio instead (mainly because I knew I had some).
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Old Jan 31st 2022, 6:17 pm
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Default Re: pine nuts !!!

Unless you are ancient macliam you might be pleasantly surprised - we were given 2 trees maybe 8 years ago now, one was a black walnut which has given us some nuts for a few years now and last year we had 75! The other tree, an almond has given us max 6 nuts. We are also in the Alentejo.
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Old Jan 31st 2022, 7:04 pm
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Default Re: pine nuts !!!

Mine looks like this.........

................and I'm told they take 10-15 years to reach maturity...... so we'll see

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Old Feb 1st 2022, 8:03 am
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Default Re: pine nuts !!!

I don't think there is much stuff left in Portugal which is noticeably cheaper than in England. Sadly.
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Old Feb 1st 2022, 8:52 am
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Default Re: pine nuts !!!

Alcohol, eating out and council tax (imi)

Everything else is moot, apart from the expensive cars, don't forget the 300 days of sunshine though

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Old Feb 1st 2022, 9:54 am
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Default Re: pine nuts !!!

Originally Posted by dingg View Post
Alcohol, eating out and council tax (imi)

Everything else is moot, apart from the expensive cars, don't forget the 300 days of sunshine though

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Looking at individual prices, I'd agree with you (oh, but add anything "tourist-related" to the "cheaper" list, Hotels, Travel).

However, somehow at the end of the month, my outgoings in Portugal are far less than in the UK - expensive for someone on Portuguese wages but less so in direct comparison to the UK.

With the huge increase in energy costs to come, heating alone will push up the relative costs in the UK.
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Old Feb 1st 2022, 10:43 am
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Default Re: pine nuts !!!

Even though we have gone off at a tangent (inevitable really) I have to agree that I am glad we are no longer in the UK with the energy prices at present, we were paying £200 a month on gas and elec so that it balanced out over the year, and then approx £600 on logs for the stove/fire, so before the recent hikes we were already paying £3000 a year, I dread to think what the new owners are paying and indeed what they will be paying in April (not knowing what tie-in they may or may not have that is)

And the cheaper stuff definitely the council tax, wine & beer, not sure about the eating out bit as we see plenty of the local cafe/rest owners buying their raw ingredients from our local pingo doce, at our prices as well, then because a fair few of them close for the winter (as we are on the coast) the 3 or 4 months that they arent trading has to be paid for some how, and the prices vary wildly eating out, we dont tend to eat out very often, in fact probably only when family come over, so 5 times in the last year maybe, one bar we used in the summer (which closes for the winter 3 months) 1 caneca 3.50e the bar down the road that stays open all year 2.60e therefore my potentially ill founded logic

expensive stuff, razors, roll-on deo, a loaf if you dont do your research properly, sun-tan lotion, NUTS ! and all forms of berries, which are apparently good for the prostate when you get to a certain age along with cherry toms which are a cheaper option, however due to the price of berries I have to stick to the cherry toms, and you can only eat so many cherry toms let me tell ya ! along with the obv 'cars' very expensive, even 'sports direct' here is expensive compared to the UK.................however all of this pales into insignificance for us two when we consider the 300 days of sunshine a year instead of 300 hours a year in the UK, so we are more than happy to take the rough with the smooth as there are a lot more 'smooths' although that still doesnt help me get my head around why pine nuts in the UK are £36 a kilo, and in PT they are 140e a kilo .........massive disparity that is ! which is not keeping me awake at night btw, in fact nothing is keeping me awake at night with vino verde at 1.79e a bottle
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Old Feb 1st 2022, 6:28 pm
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Default Re: pine nuts !!!

I think probably because in PT pine nuts are little used and consumed and the majority of (the high quality) produce is exported. PT pine nuts are considered the "premium" most expensive end of the pine nut market as opposed to in the UK which imports most of it's pine nuts from Russia / China which are the smaller nuts and relatively cheaper. So when you get pine nuts in PT you will probably get locally produced which will always be relatively expensive to say Chinese pine nuts. There are other things to consider as well, 2021 was a bad year for pine nut harvest due to a problematic spring in a lot of countries, this as well as increasing labour costs will have pushed the price up but more so % wise for the premium products.
Have you tried seeing if there are local suppliers available? I am not sure if you know about them but sites such as reformaagraria.pt and OLX.pt have various "nozes" for sale from local producers although I suspect even if you can find pine nuts they will probably not be massively cheaper than buying from the supermarket. Even in the UK I am annoyed by the high price of things such as pine nuts and it will be one of the crops I plan to focus on growing on a move to PT, that is if the animals don't get to them first... In the meantime I found that cashews are an OK if mean substitute...
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