Good savory dishes that include walnut?
April 23, 2017 11:02 AM   Subscribe

Whenever I buy walnuts for something, I end up with some amount that sort of sits around for a while until I just use them up snacking. What are some good non-dessert recipes you love that include walnut in some form? Veg, meat, fish, pasta, rice, etc. all fine; no dietary restrictions – but exotic specialty ingredients will probably pose a problem.

(European, Mediterranean and Middle Eastern ingredients are easiest for us; very basic Asian ingredients are pretty easily available.)
posted by taz to Food & Drink (57 answers total) 20 users marked this as a favorite
Walnut pesto.
posted by BlahLaLa at 11:06 AM on April 23, 2017 [11 favorites]

Pesto with walnuts! Basil, parsley, arugula, spinach, kale, whatever, with Parmesan, walnuts, olive oil and lemon juice!
posted by Grandysaur at 11:06 AM on April 23, 2017 [1 favorite]

Pesto, of course-after dealing with that pinenut syndrome for a week, I use walnuts instead in my pesto.

Just this morning, I made a breakfast quinoa recipe from Ellie Krieger-toasted walnuts on the top are the key.
posted by purenitrous at 11:07 AM on April 23, 2017 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Muhammara
posted by Philipschall at 11:07 AM on April 23, 2017 [15 favorites]

They roast up pretty well with brussels sprouts, put some parmesan on top.

I used to cook up a piece of salmon in a pan with walnuts, cranberries, and some kind of generic berry vinaigrette salad dressing. It looks fancy, too.
posted by jameaterblues at 11:09 AM on April 23, 2017 [2 favorites]

Walnut encrusted fish. Any fish. Or chicken.
posted by jeather at 11:10 AM on April 23, 2017 [1 favorite]

Walnut-crusted pork, chicken, fish. I can't vouch for those specific recipes -- they're just examples -- but the walnut-crusting concept is pretty easy to adapt to a wide variety of tastes.
posted by ourobouros at 11:11 AM on April 23, 2017 [1 favorite]

This is my favorite dressing.

(You can skip the plum vinegar.)
posted by Cwell at 11:14 AM on April 23, 2017 [1 favorite]

Linguine alla Noci. So good.
posted by Lyn Never at 11:24 AM on April 23, 2017 [5 favorites]

Honestly I am lazy and toss mine in salads or with beets, goat cheese, balsamic vinegar.
posted by warriorqueen at 11:27 AM on April 23, 2017 [10 favorites]

If you have access to pomegranate molasses, Fesenjan (chicken stew with walnuts and pomegranates) is delicious.
posted by creepygirl at 11:27 AM on April 23, 2017 [11 favorites]

Walnuts are great in salads.
posted by suelac at 11:36 AM on April 23, 2017 [1 favorite]

I had a lamb brain encrusted with walnuts in Australia.
posted by brujita at 11:41 AM on April 23, 2017 [1 favorite]

Oh yeah, aside from salad they're really pretty much good anywhere breadcrumbs + umami might be appreciated: over sauteed or grilled vegetables (especially asparagus or spinach/similar), over fish. Also in tuna/egg/chicken salad, if you're not bothered by a little crunch.
posted by Lyn Never at 11:47 AM on April 23, 2017 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: I love a little crunch!
posted by taz at 11:48 AM on April 23, 2017

I use them in stir fries.

I've found that if I fry them in butter at a low temp. (225F setting in a thermostatically controlled electric wok) they get crunchier without the browning of the flesh which I think ruins their delicate flavor.
posted by jamjam at 12:07 PM on April 23, 2017 [1 favorite]

Another take on walnut pesto-- good on green beans, asparagus, with a cheese plate, by the spoonful...

If you like roasted tarts, pastry with sliced apples with blue cheese, thyme and honey goes even better with a crumble of walnuts on top.
posted by jetlagaddict at 12:17 PM on April 23, 2017 [2 favorites]

This is a family favorite.
posted by Zedcaster at 12:18 PM on April 23, 2017 [1 favorite]

Fresh spinach leaves, walnuts and dried cranberries plus vinaigrette. Omnomnom.
posted by meijusa at 12:40 PM on April 23, 2017 [1 favorite]

I don't have any specific links to offer (I would just be googling) but Georgian cuisine is a good place to look for walnut recipes. Walnut dumplings and more!

(And since I couldn't help but google, it looks like walnut dumplings in general are a fertile genre.)
posted by trig at 12:42 PM on April 23, 2017 [3 favorites]

arugula + walnuts + goat cheese + red wine vinaigrette is a very good salad

You can make keto-friendly croutons by tossing toasted walnuts in garlic butter (they are very good on homemade Caesar salad)
posted by Lycaste at 12:54 PM on April 23, 2017 [1 favorite]

My wife always hated stuffed mushrooms until she tried this recipe, courtesy of Jeanne Lemlin: Mix together 1/2 c breadcrumbs (whole wheat if possible), 1/2 c finely chopped walnuts, 4 oz finely crumbled feta cheese, 1 Tbsp fresh dill, and 2 Tbsp milk. Wash & remove the stems from 16 large white mushrooms, and stuff them with the walnut/breadcrumb mixture. Place in an oiled/buttered baking pan, and drizzle with olive oil. Bake for 20 minutes at 375 F. Serve hot. Serves 4; add noodles and/or a salad for a complete meal.
posted by Johnny Assay at 1:04 PM on April 23, 2017 [4 favorites]

posted by potrzebie at 1:06 PM on April 23, 2017 [1 favorite]

second fesenjan. The products "pomegranate molasses", "pomegranate paste" etc are interchangeable for this purpose (you're looking for something whose ingredient is just cooked-down pomegranate juice, ie NOT a soda syrup. Should be available in any "international" market or section of supermarket.) Proportions vary, methods vary (you can do it just fine with shredded white meat if you prefer), you really can't go wrong. It's so delicious.
posted by fingersandtoes at 1:11 PM on April 23, 2017 [1 favorite]

Snack on them with whatever cheese and dried fruit you have on hand.

More ideas here and here.
posted by bunderful at 1:20 PM on April 23, 2017 [1 favorite]

Ditto muhammara, which is one of my favorites and is excellent not only as a dip or spread, but as a marinade or sauce for grilled meat, veggies, or fish. But the recipe linked above looks a bit blander than the kind I make (1 c walnuts, 1 c roasted red peppers, 2-3 cloves minced garlic, 2 tbsp lemon juice, 2 tbsp olive oil, 2-3 tbsp pomegranate molasses, plus salt, cumin, and Aleppo pepper to taste--the garlic and lemon are key). Çerkez tavuğu/Circassian chicken is kind of like a fesenjan without the pomegranate molasses, and is very good, as is tarator (both the Balkan cold yogurt-walnut soup, and the Turkish walnut-garlic-tahini dip of the same name).
posted by karayel at 1:27 PM on April 23, 2017 [2 favorites]

posted by zamboni at 1:28 PM on April 23, 2017 [4 favorites]

chop and add them to brown rice (or, better, a blend of brown and wild rice).
posted by mr vino at 1:59 PM on April 23, 2017 [1 favorite]

Walnut pieces + plain greek yogurt + blueberries + a little agave nectar = breakfast.
posted by Snerd at 2:11 PM on April 23, 2017 [1 favorite]

In any of the salad suggestions you are getting, the results will be 100 times more delicious if you toast the walnuts first.
posted by Waiting for Pierce Inverarity at 2:13 PM on April 23, 2017 [1 favorite]

Waldorf salad.

Just about any salad, really, but I generally like walnuts with spinach, apples, dried cranberries, crumbled feta cheese, and maybe a few other bits of your favourite salad bits, like grated carrot(?)... and a poppyseed dressing, or homemade yoghurt based dressing.
posted by itsflyable at 2:39 PM on April 23, 2017 [1 favorite]

My two favourite savoury walnut recipes:

1: Ken Hom's Walnut Chicken (This is where I learned about the miracle of velveting, and I use the water method almost all the time now)

2: This recipe for beef and greens works beautifully if you substitute chopped walnuts for the pine nuts. (I usually skip the vinegar splash as well). In fact, find any recipe that uses pine nuts and swap in walnuts. You're welcome!

Basically, add chopped walnuts to just about anything: grain and bean dishes, veggie burgers, fried tofu, stir-fries, curries, pita pockets.
posted by maudlin at 2:41 PM on April 23, 2017 [1 favorite]

Toasted walnuts are great in a simple olive oil + garlic sauce to toss with pasta. Just sautee a few tablespoons of good olive oil with some sliced garlic and toss in the walnuts, then toss with with your favorite pasta, parmesan, and some salt/pepper. yum.
posted by dis_integration at 2:52 PM on April 23, 2017 [4 favorites]

romesco sauce
posted by smoke at 3:51 PM on April 23, 2017 [1 favorite]

Signing in just to third fesenjan, made it for the first time recently and it's really good.
posted by Diablevert at 4:27 PM on April 23, 2017 [1 favorite]

A variation on other spreads already mentioned ( and all delicious) throwing out another Georgian dish. Pkhali
posted by JPD at 5:02 PM on April 23, 2017 [1 favorite]

As many people have suggested, adding them as a garnish to a dish or a salad is is even better when you candy them first.
posted by mmascolino at 5:22 PM on April 23, 2017 [1 favorite]

I make this all the time:
Pasta with Butternut Squash, Walnuts, Sage and Grana Padano
posted by empath at 5:34 PM on April 23, 2017 [3 favorites]

Lentils and walnuts go well together. How about lentil walnut crepes?
posted by bricoleur at 6:04 PM on April 23, 2017 [1 favorite]

Fourthing fesenjan. Wherever you get Middle Eastern ingredients should have the pomegranate molasses.
posted by madcaptenor at 6:31 PM on April 23, 2017 [2 favorites]

I like Smitten's arugula, green bean, potato and walnut salad. And this radish greens and walnut pasta from the French Market Cookbook.

Also, walnuts are wonderful in oatmeal.
posted by crush at 6:58 PM on April 23, 2017 [1 favorite]

A weeknight staple for me is similar to the recipe empath linked -- butternut squash ravioli, sage butter, walnuts, and whatever hard cheese I have lying around.
posted by thrungva at 9:37 PM on April 23, 2017 [1 favorite]

Walnuts and goat cheese are a great combination of toppings for pizza. I sometimes pair these with a bell pepper sauce instead of tomato sauce. (For bell pepper sauce, just throw roasted red bell peppers in a blender with seasonings and a small amount of oil.)

Flatbread with feta cheese, walnuts, radishes, and fresh herbs is a common start (or so I'm told) to an Iranian meal.
posted by aws17576 at 10:18 PM on April 23, 2017 [2 favorites]

You can chuck walnuts into just about any old salad. They're great in PB&J sandwiches, oatmeal (or many other kinds of hot or cold cereal, for that matter), Asian noodle bowls, stir fry, and bunches of other things that aren't off the top of my head.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 12:05 AM on April 24, 2017 [1 favorite]

Warm what seems like too much olive oil (like a quarter cup) of olive oil in a small pan. Add walnuts and sauté (I'm not sure the right word here) for a minute or two. Turn off heat and add a pinch of cayenne and a pinch of smoke paprika and a pinch of salt. Use as pasta garnish or the base for a salad dressing or drizzled over lentils, etc.
posted by (Over) Thinking at 1:31 AM on April 24, 2017 [2 favorites]

If you make a slurry with chopped walnuts, blue cheese, rosemary, and red wine, it is delicious atop grilled lamb chops.
posted by carmicha at 2:39 AM on April 24, 2017 [1 favorite]

This pasta is way better than it sounds and way way better than it looks -- we probably eat it once a month.
posted by AmandaA at 9:18 AM on April 24, 2017 [2 favorites]

Walnuts are a great accompaniment to ravioli.
posted by General Malaise at 9:47 AM on April 24, 2017 [1 favorite]

Seconding Georgian food - try kharcho. Sorry, no specific recipe. I was so blown away by this stew after ordering it in a Georgian restaurant in Moscow (oh, if only I could be transported there now), so I tried to approximate it at home and it turned out pretty good. Yum.
posted by kitcat at 10:50 AM on April 24, 2017 [1 favorite]

Chile Rellenos en Nogada is a favorite savory walnut dish of mine. Fesanjan is also great. For Fesanjan I recommend using 100% pomegranate molasses rather than varieties that are made with sugar.
posted by zombiedance at 10:57 AM on April 24, 2017 [1 favorite]

Toasted walnuts are lovely in salad and with pasta. Two perennial (and quick!) favorites in our household include this broccoli and pasta dish and a salad with kale, avocado, and walnuts in a lemon-olive oil dressing.

Walnuts plus pear on a pizza are divine.
posted by lasagnaboy at 12:00 PM on April 24, 2017 [1 favorite]

I don't remember where I originally encountered it, but there are lots of versions of walnut taco filling out there now. Sounds odd, is delicious. I liked a version I had with sun-dried tomatoes.
posted by jocelmeow at 1:52 PM on April 24, 2017 [2 favorites]

oh, I haven't tried it but there's a whole category of walnut-based vegetarian chopped liver recipes.
posted by fingersandtoes at 1:59 PM on April 24, 2017

Oh! I just picked my dandelions and tried this for the first time: (well, actually, I modified it to walnuts and changed the dressing to poppyseed, but man, it was good! - just remember to let it sit in the dressing for 10 minutes, especially if you're not inclined to like bitter greens... although I didn't find them all that bitter) Dandelion Salad
posted by itsflyable at 3:34 PM on April 24, 2017

... I just thought you might like that, for one who does not like to see anything go to waste. ;-)
posted by itsflyable at 3:36 PM on April 24, 2017

I have impressed quite a few people with this green olive, walnut and pomegranate salad.
posted by the duck by the oboe at 11:05 PM on April 24, 2017

One of my favorite savory walnut dishes is "nut cheese casserole" from a local restaurant. It's sort of a combo of a quiche, a vegan nut loaf and a greek spinach pie. I don't have the recipe but I feel like this is very close, if you used spinach.
posted by SassHat at 4:51 AM on May 2, 2017

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