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Do you ever need finely crushed nuts in your recipe, but only have whole walnuts in your cupboard? No problem! An easy way I discovered to crush the nuts is to place them on a large sheet of wax paper, fold the wax paper over the top of the nuts and use a rolling pin to crush the nuts, pushing down and rolling. No mess, no fuss, and easy!
By Linn from Dartmouth, Nova Scotia
If you are chopping nuts with a knife, you can make them easier to chop by putting them in the oven for 5 to 10 minutes at 300 degrees F (149 C) before chopping them. A quick way to chop nuts is to put them in a plastic bag and hit them with a mallet or roll over them with a rolling pin.
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I re-use bread bags to crunch nuts. I hated getting out the chopper and having to clean it when I was baking cookies. I just measure the amount of nuts I need and pour them in the bag. I grab a can of veggies or soup and crunch the nuts. All I have to do is pour the nuts in the batter and throw the bag away. It's free and no extra clean up.
I worried about this practice. You see we used to do many things with bread wrappers until we were told that some wrappers had lead in the paint/printing and were not suitable for long term storage. Crushing nuts may also pick up this lead off the bags. Does anyone know about this? Has it changed? Thank you (10/18/2004)
Because the nuts are on the inside of the bag and the paint on the outside, it shouldn't be a problem. You could also use a strong zip lock bag if the bread bag is a concern. (10/19/2004)
I also use bread bags for rolling cracker and graham wafer crumbs. I just tie a knot in the end and use the rolling pin until I have fine crumbs. Works good and no mess. (11/18/2004)
I use a small but deep bowl and have a tool that looks like a biscuit cutter minus the "hole" in center. I chop in that. The bowl is small enough that the nuts jump around in it, and I have them cut in no time. Not as bad to wash as a nut chopper. (06/01/2008)
I save the inside "bags" from cereal boxes. Very handy for chopping or freezing items in single servings. (06/21/2008)