During the brief season when green almonds are available, I look for as many ways to use them as I can. Most often they are eaten fresh as a snack in countries where almond trees grow. But I’ve rediscovered old ways of serving them (cooked in stews) and new ways to eat them raw. This Green Almond Relish adds a sour crunchy note to cooked vegetable salads such as the beet salad pictured here. Use it to brighten up stewed dishes like stewed chicken, lamb or veal shanks (osso buco in Italian), the same way the traditional condiment called gremolata is used. (Italian gremolata, inspiration for this relish, is made from chopped parsley, chopped garlic, grated lemon zest, salt and pepper.)

Use this tart dry condiment with meats and grilled food. I sprinkled some of this relish on smoked pork ribs from Porky Petes, a local BBQ shop. It gave the same cooling effect you’d get from a side of coleslaw.

The salad pictured at the top of this post consists of a bed of arugula tossed in balsamic vinaigrette dressing. Slices of a large red beet that I roasted whole sit on top.  I garnished the beet slices with the green almond relish and a few slices of imported Italian prosciutto.

Read more that I have written about green almonds here.

Kitchen Notebook

Stewart and Jasper, a California almond grower, harvests, packages and sells green almonds online each spring.  They kindly send me some to use as I am one of green almonds’ chief evangelists. You can find them at Green Almonds or in a local farmer’s market in California.

Green Almond Relish

Yield: 1/2 cup

Ingredients

8 whole green almonds, chopped

1/4 cup chopped parsley

2 large cloves garlic

1 scallion, rot removed, cut into four pieces

Juice of half a lemon, more to taste

Salt and black pepper to taste

Directions

  1. Combine the chopped green almonds, the chopped parsley, garlic and scallion in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the metal blade. Pulse the machine for 3 to 4 seconds several times until you have a coarse mixture. Add the lemon juice. Adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper and mor lemon juice if needed.
  2. Covered and refrigerated, the relish will keep for 2 or 3 days.