Every Friday, I hit Boston’s Haymarket with one of my dearest friends, the CEO of SeeMyDrink.com.
Haymarket is loud, dirty, and absolutely wonderful. It’s Boston’s biggest outdoor market, and you’re almost always guaranteed to find something interesting. (Click here to take a peek at more pictures of the market.)
We buy a little cheese at Harry’s Cheese Shop. We get some provisions for the weekend. We keep our eyes out for the cheap, the ripe, the delicious, and the unusual.
I stopped in my tracks when I saw a giant box of green almonds.
“WHAT are those?” I asked, pointing at what looked like a heap of round sage leaves.
“Almonds,” replied the guy at the back of the stall.
“Really?? They’re, like, furry.”
“No, they’re good. Watch.”
The almond guy grabbed one out of the box, slit the end with a nail, squeezed out the nut, and popped it into his mouth.
“Delicious!” he said. “You try some?”
He didn’t have to ask me twice. He bagged up a pound for me, I gave him two bucks, and my friend and I meandered off toward the cheese shop.
What is a green almond?
Popular in the Middle East and the Mediterranean, green almonds are just what they sound like: Immature almonds.
Almonds shrivel and harden after they’re harvested. So, if left to their own devices, these little guys would shed their green sweaters as they age and shrivel to resemble the brown, holey-shelled beasties that we know as almonds.
Green almonds have a really short season—sharing that Endangered Spring Vegetable Status with ramps, fiddlehead ferns, and pea greens—from April to about mid-June. You might find them labeled “fresh almonds.”
They have a fuzzy green hull that protects the baby nut.
To get into one, slice through the hull with a paring knife until you hit the meat of the nut. Cut around the hull in a circle, like you would to get inside an avocado.
Split it open.
The nut itself is kind of squishy, like a grape or lychee.
They taste, well, green. Kind of grassy. A little tangy. They were good, but I’m not sure I’d buy them again.
What can you do with green almonds?
You mean, aside from chew on them thoughtfully in the kitchen and think that they’re kinda good, but kinda strange?
Snack on them fresh out of the shell. Or make like David Lebovitz, and use them to top ice cream, or tuck a few into jars of homemade jam.
Have you had them?
How did you serve them? (And what did you think?)