Thursday, December 20, 2007


The colloquial pronunciation used by some growers might be "a’monds", or even "a’mins". The semi-sweet stoney seed of a fruit that many people think of as a nut.
“… [what] we think of as a nut is technically the seed of the fruit of the almond tree ... Like its cousins, the peach, cherry and apricot trees, the almond tree bears fruits with stone-like seeds (or pits) within. The seed of the almond fruit is what we refer to as the almond nut.” -- the world’s healthiest foods
While on the tree, this seed is protected by up to three layers -- a skin, a hard shell, and the outer hull. Harvesting and processing these nuggets of nutrition is heavy and dusty work that most be done during one of the hottest months of summer.

50 years ago, the method was to swing long, heavy, rubber-ended clubs to smash into the main limbs of a loaded tree. The nuts -- with all types of dust, small critters, and debris -- would rain down on canvases spread out on the ground under the tree. This part of the harvesting was called “knocking a’monds”.

Pronounced as “short a” NOT followed by an “l”-- to some growers it’s “a’monds” or even “a’mins”, mind you. It might be pronounced this way because all that heavy club swinging and smashing knocks the ‘ell out of them (the nuts)