The Almond is a small tree with oblong leaves and pale pink flowers (see photo). Almond is native to the Middle East and Central to Western Asia and has been cultivated for over 3,000 years in the Near East, North Africa and southern Europe. Now it is also cultivated in many other parts of the world, such as California and Australia.
Although popularly referred to as a nut, the edible part of the almond is botanically not a true nut, but the seed of a drupe (a botanic name for a type of fruit), which consists of an outer hull and a hard shell with the seed inside.
The seed is consumed raw, boiled, dried and toasted and used in a wide variety of culinary facets.
Almonds have a high energy value at around 580 kcal per 100g, they are rich in protein, sugar, fat and vitamins.