I love the bulk foods sections in Whole Foods Market because there are all kinds of fascinating foods that I've never heard of in those bins, and every store has similar yet different items. As the seasons change, the items in the bulk foods bins can change as well.
This weekend, at Whole Foods Walnut Creek, I found DuChilly Hazelnuts which are grown in Washington state. Have you heard of them before? I haven't. If you want to learn more, the LA Times did an article just about this nut.
I loved these hazelnuts right away. They look like almonds. DuChillies are larger and sweeter without the bitter skin of a traditional hazelnut, and meaty much like an almond which to me makes them perfect for snacking.
Besides snacks, the DuChilly hazlenut is great in salads, chopped up for yogurt or cottage cheese, and as a topping for sauteed green beans in lieu of almonds. In fact, I'd loved to try and make a Nutella-like creation with these meaty hazelnuts.
On the sweet side, what goes really well with meaty nuts is crystallized ginger aka candied ginger. Why eat ginger? Here's 10 health benefits of ginger. In my book, if you are going to eat candy why not eat a sweet that has health benefits, am I right?
Whole Foods has crystallized ginger in the bulk foods section of many of their stores which is awesome because you really don't need to get much of this candied ginger to satisfy the sweet tooth. For me, 1-2 small cube is usually enough. If you feel homemakey, David Lebovitz has a good recipe to make candied ginger.
I love mixing this ginger in with trail mix because you get sweet with that ginger burn. I love it!