Origin: The pistachio tree natively belongs to western Asia and Asia Minor. It is found from Syria to the Caucasus and Afghanistan. There has been Archaeological evidence in Turkey that shows that the pistachio nuts were used for food. Pistachio was used as early as 7000 B.C.
Later, Pistachio spread to Italy from Syria. It also moved to other Mediterranean countries. In Persia, the pistachios were considered very important and were valued as dry fruit of riches. It was one of the most desired delicacies at that time. Pistachio tree was also introduced to the United States of America in 1854.
This tree was introduced by Charles Mason. He brought and distributed seeds of Pistachio in the United States. The pistachio trees were planted in California, Texas and other cities. In early 1900, the different varieties of pistachio nuts were cultivated in the US. Around 1875, the pistachio was introduced in France. The commercial production of pistachio started in 1970. The leading producers of Pistachio are Iran and Turkey, Syria, India, Greece, Pakistan, etc.
Scientifically: Pistachio is a small, deciduous tree. It is scientifically known as Pistacia vera. This edible nut is green in color with a hard shell. The fruit is sweet and fleshy. Pistachios grow in cool areas and the bud grows out in hot summers. Pistachio trees have the tendency to tolerate extreme weather and is drought resistant. It belongs to the species of cashew family Anacardiaceae. The tree grows around 5 to 15 meters tall. The leaves are set in an alternate manner and are pinnately compound.
Usage: Pistachio nuts are very nutritious and are low in calorie. Pistachio nuts are usually eaten as a dry fruit. These nuts can be eaten roasted, salted, sweetened or flavored. It has a nice nutty taste and a very pleasant smell. Pistachios have extensive culinary use. Roasted and chopped pistachio nuts are used in salads, pasta, and desserts. Pistachio pastry, pistachio ice-cream, pistachio cookies, pistachio cakes are preferred by all age group.
Pistachio has amazing health benefits. It is rich in Vitamin B6 and antioxidants. It helps in promoting a healthy gut, controls cholesterol and blood pressure levels. It also helps in clearing out acne and reduces skin inflammation. It also helps in neutralizing the free radical damage. It also boosts heart health.
Below are some DIYs with Pistachios:
- Take 5-6 pistachios, 3-4 drops of honey, and a teaspoon of rose water. Blend all the ingredients together and apply on the face. Keep it on for 10-15 minutes and then rinse. This helps in moisturizing the skin and makes it radiant.
- Take some ground pistachios and add some grated cucumber to it. Mix them together and apply on the face for 5-10 minutes. This remedy helps in clearing out acne and soothes the skin.
- Take some ground pistachios and add a tablespoon of milk powder to it. Add some water to make a paste. Apply this paste on the face for 15 minutes and then wash it off. This remedy helps in lightening and brightening of the skin.
- Take a tablespoon of pistachio oil and mix it with a tablespoon of coconut oil. Massage this oil on the scalp and the hair length. Keep it on for 30-45 minutes and then rinse. This remedy helps in boosting hair growth.
- Take a tablespoon of powdered pistachio, one tablespoon of lemon juice and a teaspoon of barley flour. Mix all the ingredients together. Apply this on the face for 15 minutes and then wash it off in scrubbing motion. This controls the production of excess sebum and gently removes the dead kin.