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What can we say about Iranian Pistachios, Are they Really Better?
R&D Team Member
Iran is universally known for producing some of the best quality pistachios in the world. This quality can be directly attributed to the sunny weather of this country, which follows the average cold and rainy winters. Iranian Pistachio is identified as a luxury product in some countries like Japan and Germany.
The English name pistachio is obtained from “Pisteh,” a Persian name, also defined as the green almond. Pistachio nuts are tangled with Iranian history and culture and are truly present in all aspects of Iranian life. Pistachio nuts get a mention in all Iranian stories, literature, traditions, beliefs, and rituals such as Yalda festival (The longest night of the year) and Eid Norooz (Iranians’ new year) and are even used in weddings and funerals.
Iranian pistachios have many local names, and each name signifies a region, quality or shape type. Though, in term of shapes, there are four main groups. All types can be founded in Iranian markets in roasted or raw with different productions offers such as mechanically, closed or open pistachio, salted and roasted, salted and roasted with added lime.
Currently, Iran tops the list with the high-quality production of 270,000 metric tonnes. Iranian pistachios provide many benefits that set them apart from their competitors. A more excellent opportunity is offered to customers within four main commercial varieties. Additionally, higher meat content grants better value for money.
Iranian pistachios have a world-famous flavor that is unrivaled. This taste advantage is improved by roasting Iranian pistachios at higher temperatures, made by higher unsaturated oil content. This high-temperature roasting reduces any bacterial pollution, which may be existing in raw product. The following list indicates the five notable advantages of Iranian pistachios:
There are many varieties of pistachios produced by curious Iranian farmers, on a tiny scale. Each decade or two, one of these species has been developed and became beneficial in several aspects, so other farmers have used it. Some of these varieties have survived enough to become permanent and stable commercial varieties.
Generally, all commercial varieties of Iranian pistachios split into two main kinds by shape: “long” and “round”.
Long: In this type of pistachio, the ratio of the length to the largest diameter is more than 1.5.
Round: A pistachio type is called round if the ratio of the length to the largest diameter is less than 1.5.
The native Pistacia vera trees produced long pistachios. An old farmer first developed the round type pistachio from Rafsanjan, Iran, named Mr. Ohadi around 70 years ago. Some earlier varieties, such as Momtaz and Sefid Peste, have gone out of fashion and are not produced anymore.
There are a lot of different cultivars and varieties of Iranian pistachios. Such as “Fandoghi” (40% of pistachio orchards), “Ahmad-Aghaie” (12%), “Kaleh-Ghochi” (20%), and “Akbari” (15%). Each cultivar has its own differing flavor and properties:
Fandoghi Pistachio (Round Pistachio):
This variety is the most widely available pistachio cultivar and grows in most pistachio growing areas of Iran. Fandoghi is of round types and has the lowest shape index between the four commercial varieties. “Fandoghi” pistachios are very reasonable in price, so they are the first type in terms of exportation.
Available Size (pcs/oz): 28-30, 30-32, 32-34
Kaleh Ghochi Pistachio (Jumbo Pistachio):
This cultivar is known for being large. It’s susceptible to water deficit and its leaves are complex. This variety of pistachio is vulnerable to cold weather in spring and can be harvested in September.
The local name is acquired from the shape of this variety which looks like rams’ head. This type is popular for being large. Kaleh Ghochi (jumbo) pistachios are longer and larger compared to round pistachios. The delicious taste of this nut is due to its high-fat extent.
Kaleh Ghochi pistachio has a rich history in cultivation as it’s been developing for more than 4000 years. The present superior-excellent situation of Iranian kaleh Ghochi pistachio is the outcome of Iranian farmers perfect ability. Current researches show that more than 70% of worlds jumbo pistachio production is in Iran.
Kalleh Ghochi is not being budded anymore, and production is just from the existing trees. Although they are commercially pretty successful, their trees recorded a sheer drop in production and growth as they become older than 40 years old. It is assumed that the output would slowly decline.
Available Size (pcs/oz): 20-22, 22-24, 24-26
Ahmad-Aghaie Pistachio (Long Pistachio):
The latest commercial variety which is very popular among farmers, because of its shorter time to reach production and its high yield. Ahmad Aghaie pistachio is very popular in India and Greece markets. The nut is rather large and its fruit is almond-shaped and has the whitest shell hue between the four. The production of this variety is increasing.
Available Size (pcs/oz): 22-24, 24-26, 26-28, 28-30
Akbari pistachio (Super Long Pistachio):
This variety has the highest economic value. Its nuts are big and almond-shaped and can be harvested in late September. This is a brand-new variety with excellent yield and long, large fruits which are very easy to open.
Available Size (pcs/oz): 18-20, 20-22, 22-24
2- Higher Kernel to In-Shell Ratio:
Iranian pistachios have a high meat to in-shell ratio, meaning that you are buying more amount of the edible meats (kernels) for the same amount of pistachios you purchase. A whole single pistachio, shell and all, weighs about 0.02 ounces (0.57 grams), and the nutmeat or kernel of the Iranian pistachio — The piece of the pistachio that you eat — makes up about 80 percent of that weight.
Pistachios are generally roasted to improve their aroma, taste, and crunchy texture. Roasting is described as cooking using dry heat, which would cook the food equally on all sides. Most nuts are roasted without their shell, but pistachios are often roasted in-shell.
During roasting, nuts dissipate some moisture. Hence, a roasted nut weighs lighter than a raw one. That describes why the fat content per ounce is somewhat higher in roasted nuts.
Iranian pistachios are more suitable for roasting. Because of their higher unsaturated oil content, Iranian pistachios have the potential to be roasted at 160 to 180°C. Good roasting draws out the unique flavor of the pistachio while reducing any live bacteria from the roasted output. Lower roasting temperatures suggested by some suppliers will not reach the two above benefits.
The ritual of cracking the pistachio out of its cream-colored shell is nearly as pleasant as the flavor itself, which is remarkable, given the uniqueness of their nutty, rich and earthy taste. The taste is almost unlikely to describe, and there’s no other ingredient like it. Because of the roastability potential of Iranian pistachios, they are more delicious. For a long time, people around the world have shown a preference for the taste of Iranian pistachios. All four commercial types of Iranian pistachios have a delicious, rich, unique, and peculiar flavor. Some people claim Iranian pistachios taste much better than other ones.
Here’s a number of factors why it tastes better:
- The soil is more fertile, including higher vibrations, which can affect the texture, taste, and quality.
- Different regions of Earth have different electromagnetic frequency where it also affects each product.
- Pistachios are native to the region of Iran.
- No pesticides, GMO, artificial chemicals are also the reasons for the excellent taste of Iranian pistachio.
The high number of farmers, consumers, exporters, and importers of Iranian pistachios makes for conditions of extreme competition in the business. As a result, better trading opportunities offer themselves to those involved in buying and selling Iranian pistachios.
It’s the light-green nut that makes everything look more cheerful. In some nations, it’s also known as the happy or smiling nut – yes, when the hard-shell splits, it can seem like a smiling face. However, this is a perfect nut that provides more than good looks. It’s a nutritional substation and even a world champion!
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