Pine nuts are the edible seeds of pines (family Pinaceae, genus Pinus). There are 115 different species of pines, but only about 20 of those species are used to harvest pine nuts for culinary purposes
Pines are evergreen trees characterized by needle like leaves and production of pine cones. Stone pines are harvested in the Mediterranean region of southern Europe.
It has been harvested for edible pine nuts since pre-historic times.
Pine nuts are rich in calories, vitamins, antioxidants and minerals and packed with numerous health promoting phyto-chemicals. Pinenuts are excellent source of B-complex group of vitamins such as thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, pantothenic acid, vitamin B-6 (pyridoxine) and folates
The flowers of pine tree subsequently develop into a cone. The female
cones take 36 months to mature after pollination. At maturity, the
female cones are 3-35 cm long and usually open up to release the seeds.
The pine nuts (seeds from the cones) are large, pale brown, with a
powdery black coating.