The blog The Story With Wheat covers the fact that some foods, whole grains and nuts have phytates in them that are actually nutrient blockers. To neutralise phytates, it is necessary to soak your grains or your nuts in salt water overnight with a squeeze of lemon juice or a splash of live natural yoghurt. Sally Fallon’s book ‘Nourishing Traditions‘ goes into how to do this. The overnight soaking part is easy. However you should then leave them in a low oven 150°F, 66°C for 12 – 24 hours. This preserves the enzymes. One way round this is to buy a dehydrator. However I usually cheat and leave them in a low oven for about 1 1⁄2 hours then turn the temperature up to about 125°C, 257°F for a further half hour or so – dependant upon the size of the nut. Clearly brazils need longer than macadamias. So I admit they are less nutritious than if I’d left them in my fan oven whirring away all day. But they are tasty and make a nice snack.
I also usually roll them in a little olive oil before turning up the heat. And then add a little celtic sea salt after they have cooked. I used to just roast my nuts – but they are more digestible when soaked first. After soaking and roasting, the nuts should then be stored in an airtight container.
The easiest nuts to roast are pecans and walnuts. Brazils are pretty easy too, they just take a long time. Pistachios are fairly biddable. Macadamias are harder to get right – they can burn very easily. Almonds are tricky since they go from edible to rock hard very fast, so need frequent checking. Cashews present difficulties since they have already been roasted -even if they puport to be raw – because in their natural state, they contain cyanide. This is destroyed by roasting. But this pre-roasting makes them hard to roast and not become horrible.