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Hickory nut quesion for anyone with tips

Last post Oct 08, 2007 7:56 PM by Jenita_MO . 14 replies.

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  • Hickory nut quesion for anyone with tips
    We have been blessed with a LOT of hickory nuts again this year and my DH was wondering if anyone has tips or hints on cracking them.

    *Do you "treat" them before cracking?
    *Is there a special way to crack them as to get more "halves" than tiny pieces?
    *How do you store them so they don't mold?
    *Do you roast them to dry them?

    Any really good recipes using them?

    Thank you
  • RE: Hickory nut quesion for anyone with tips
    There are special nutcrackers available for the hard to crack black walnuts. I suppose you can use them for Hickory muts. It depends on how you put the nut into the nut cracker in order to bust the "seam" so the nut breaks in half instead of breaking up into small puiefces.
    Let tge whole nuts dry and then store in a dry cool place. The cracked nuts are best frozen so they do nit get rancid. You can loghtly toast them before or after freezing. I prefer to toast after freezing, just before using for that freshly "toasted" flavor. Not all recipes call for roasted/toasted nuts that is why it is best to just freeze them after shelling them.
  • RE: Hickory nut quesion for anyone with tips
    Why don't you Google Hickory nuts.
    It says the outer hull will split open when the nuts are ripe. The shell has 2 parts (like a walnut) that can be split/cracked to get the halves out. (I suggested the same special nutcrackers people use for black walnuts). I don't know but I suppose you can get the outer hull off by putting the nuts i your drive-way and drive oer them. THat is what we did to get the softer, thick green outer hull off the black walnuts.
    Isn't there anybody else in your neck of the woods who has hickory trees and knows the best way to harvest and get the meats out? THat would be the easiest way to learn through somebody else's experience. by seeing and watching and asking those who have done it for years.
    Good luck, if they are as hard to do as black walnuts I don't envy you but I know they are worth the effort.
  • RE: Hickory nut quesion for anyone with tips
    Beleive my Uncle used to put them in the freezer before picking them out. He thought that they would come out by halves then.
  • RE: Hickory nut quesion for anyone with tips
    I agree with Grelo. My father used to hang them in the basement in a mesh bag to dry out then he would stand them up and crack them lengthwise with a hammer. Hard on the fingers but a good many came out in halves. He froze the nutmeats after they were cracked.
  • RE: Hickory nut quesion for anyone with tips
    Thank you very much. I've passed the messages on to my DH.

  • RE: Hickory nut quesion for anyone with tips
    I LOVE hickory nuts. When I was home mom cracked hickory nuts all winter and they were soo good! Where can I purchase hickory nuts? Thanks!
  • RE: Hickory nut quesion for anyone with tips
    Rosie~~usually farm markets handle them. They are very pricey.
    A local cheese factory was actually advertising that they wanted to buy them. They make a specialty "hickory nut cheddar" cheese.

    The ones my DH has cracked over the years wind up in the hands of family and friends as gifts.

  • RE: Hickory nut quesion for anyone with tips
    Tippytoes, we do have a few hickory nut trees, but I have never been patient enough to crack very many of them! They are really hard to crack with a hammer. I do have a recipe out of a church cookbook from the 1960's for you if you'd like to try it.


    1 cup butter OR margarine
    2 cups sugar
    4 egg yolks
    1 tsp. vanilla
    4 egg whites, beaten stiff
    3 cups flour
    2 tsp. baking powder
    1 cup milk
    2 cups nuts

    Cream butter and sugar, add one at a time, egg yolks, and then vanilla. Sift flour & baking powder together and add to above mixture, alternating with milk.
    Fold in nuts and egg whites beaten stiff. Pour into two greased loaf pans and bake at 350º for 30 to 40 min.

    I haven't made this recipe, but the lady contributing it was a good country cook.

  • RE: Hickory nut quesion for anyone with tips
    I love hickory nuts. We didn't have but just a few here in our part of Mo. We had a heavy ice storm and so the nuts and acorns are very few. When we do have them usually the outer hull falls off as the nuts fall and if they have not they are very easy to pull off-contrary to walnuts. We just let them set for awhile then I put them on the side so the top and pointed ind are pointing left and right and crack that way and generally you can get them out in halves or at least very large pieces and are much easier than holding them up the other way to crack. I hope this makes sense but if you crack one both ways you will see what I mean. We always use them any way we would pecans, they taste very similar. I have made hickory nut pie many times just using the Pecan Pie recipe, delicious in cookies too. I usually don't toast them but if you take the time to do so just before baking they really are better I think. After I pick them out tho I always freeze them till ready to use unless it is going to be pretty quick. They don't ever mold that way. I just store them in a box, sack or bucket tho in the garage, porch or basement till I am ready to pick them out. Makes the winter days go by quicker and gives you something to do. I often crack up a bunch and freeze them then get a bag out when I feel like I need something to do and pick them out. And as the previous lady said they make wonderful gifts for friends and relatives.
  • RE: Hickory nut quesion for anyone with tips
    I'am from Iowa and have NEVER seen them at a farmers market. There must be a place somewhere that they sell these!!! Will be glad for any info. Thanks......
  • RE: Hickory nut quesion for anyone with tips
    Here is the notice for this year from the people I bought hickory and butternuts from last winter. I found recipes by googling nut names. cj

    Subject: butternut and other nut prices

    Here is the price list and nuts I will have available. Let me know what you want, but do not send any payment until I let you know the nuts are ready.
    2007 nut prices

    Nuts lb Grafted varieties lb Meats lb

    Black Walnuts $1.00 $2.00 $9.00

    Persian Walnuts $2.00 * $2.50 * $5.00 *

    Butternuts $1.50 $3.00 $25.00

    Heartnuts $3.00 $20.00

    Buartnuts $3.00 $20.00 (Butternut X Heartnut Hyb)

    Hazels $2.50 * $5.00 *

    Hickorys $2.00 $4.00 $20.00

    Hicons $5.00 $20.00 (Hickory X Pecan Hyb)

    Chestnuts $2.50

    NOTE priority will be given to inshell nut orders

    Prices listed are at the farm S&H extra

    * No nuts this year

    ** Very limited supply this year

    Bud Luers

    5312 Possum Run Rd.

    Bellville Ohio 44813



  • RE: Hickory nut quesion for anyone with tips
    just a bit of trivia...not trying to hijack your thread. My former landlord used hickory nuts for discipline for his 5 kids. Depending on which rule they broke, the punishment was to crack and 'pick' a jar of hickory nuts. Minor problem....a baby food jar. Big problem.....a quart jar. He said it gave them plenty of time to think...all while they were filling the jars, and also until their fingers felt better.
  • RE: Hickory nut quesion for anyone with tips
    Loise~~Thank you for the cake recipe. It does look good.

    Cookie~~that is hilarious. Glad I wasn't one of his kids though. LOL

    Thank you for all the information everyone.
    I have also done the pecan pie with the hickory nuts, AllspiceMO. Good stuff.

    Yumaaz~~Oh my...I couldn't believe the prices of those nuts. The cheese factory is not offering nearly that much.

    Thank you again. I've learned a lot and DH will be trying a couple different techniques that you shared.

  • RE: Hickory nut quesion for anyone with tips
    I would have posted exactly the same thing Allspice did. We live in northern Missouri and had almost no nuts or fruits--also due to the early freeze. Hickory nuts are our favorite--definitely worth the trouble of cracking those hard shells!