The walnut harvest is an unforgettable experience for all those who have had the privilege of growing up in the country. It was

always a red-letter day for me when, armed with a stick, I was allowed to climb the high walnut trees and beat down the nuts, which, though ripe, were not quite ready to fall out of their green outer shells. Even the bravest climber had fearful moments sometimes, when some outer branch would not release its precious load, and it was neither safe nor easy to persevere until the last nut dropped to the ground.

Searching for walnuts in the leaves under the trees, piling them together, then prising the nuts out of their shells, although not the cleanest thing for the hands, was great fun. Such work was not for the ladies with their delicate fingers and polished nails, because for more than two weeks afterwards the yellowish-brown stains would still be impregnated in the hands.

Many of us will be familiar with the good fresh taste of newly harvested walnuts. Eaten with wholewheat bread and sweet apple cider or freshly pressed grape juice, they are both delicious and nutritious. But did you know that walnuts are especially good for those suffering from metabolic disturbances and constipation? When drugstore laxatives do not produce the desired results, walnuts may solve the problem. Walnuts are recommended for people with liver disorders and although most liver patients cannot tolerate fat they will find that moderate quantities of walnuts will agree with them quite well.

So, do not wait for the festive season to eat walnuts. They should be eaten all the year round. Make a point of including them with fruit dishes and snacks.


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