Friday, November 16, 2012


I've become a bit of a cashew snob.  I can no longer eat the typical brands you see in your local supermarket nor would I want to as they are often loaded with preservatives and chemicals you can't pronounce. So, I often don't even sample nuts from companies displaying at the food trade shows I attend. Nuts+Nuts is different. It was actually their packaging that caught my eye. Packaged in a shiny silver pouch and labeled with bright green and orange colors, it is hard to pass by. But, even more important is what was inside. These cashews are perfectly roasted and perfectly spiced in such a way that they put other cashew importers and growers to shame.

Behind this company are Cyrilla and Caecilia, two sisters who partnered to share their family recipes and aid the local farmers in Indonesia. Cyrilla was diagnosed with lupus and although she could no longer work full-time, she used her love of food and knowledge of design to design the branding and packaging while Caecilia used her passion for cooking along with the family's recipe to create these amazing nuts.

Their main mission is to support the communities in Indonesia so they work directly with the small farmers. Their relationship with the farmers ensures fresh, hand-selected, premium cashews at a fair price with no middlemen. They hand-chop all the ingredients and slow-roast them in small batches using their family's special recipe.  Then, they package them using no preservatives or additives.

I got to try the sweet and salty as well as the spicy flavors and I have to say these are some of the best cashews I've ever had. They have this smoothness to them and you just have to wonder how they could taste so good.  The spicy ones are roasted with coconut oil, fresh chili, garlic, and other spices. There are actually pieces of chili in the package.  The other flavor I tried -- the sweet and salty are just that -- sweet and salty with a hint of garlic. I dare you to eat just one.

And back to the packaging -- these packages are made of natural pandanus, wood bark, and banana bark handmade by local communities in Java and Bali. The packages ensure freshness and crunchiness.

As the holiday season approaches, I think these would make an excellent gift. They are sold at specialty gift stores across the country or you can buy them online for $26 for eight 2-ounce packs.  This is a purchase that will not only make you feel good about supporting the farmers and the community in Indonesia, it'll make the recipient of them happy because the nuts are just that good.

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