This hearty healthy nut is a natural resident here in the UK being consumed on the British Isles for about 9,000 years. Indigo Herbs brings you Hazelnuts in all their organic wholefood glory. These nuts are renowned for protecting the heart, have a distinctive taste and are full of vitamins and minerals.
In Britain Hazelnut one of the oldest food sources. On the Isle of Colonsay in Scotland, archaeologists unearthed a Mesolithic sight which contained a series of pits. They found that one of these pits was full of burnt hazelnut shells. The Hazelnut shells were then carbon dated to around 7,000 BC. Because of the lack of animals on the island it is thought that the people who inhabited the land were mostly vegetarian. Romans cultivated Hazelnuts in Britain as well as being used in wattle and daub houses.
A Chinese scripture dated at 2,838 BC attests to the importance of Hazelnut and is rated as one of the 5 sacred nourishments that the divine powers bestowed on human beings. The ancient Greek physician Dioscorides used Hazelnut as a cure for throat aliments and baldness in special mixed including honey.
Throughout Europe the Hazel tree has been used not only for the nuts but also as a good coppicing tree. There are 14-18 species of Hazel with some of the East Asian varieties being in dispute. Each tree has simple rounded leaves that are broadest at the tip. The Hazel species is of single sex either having yellow male flowers or small female red flowers.