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The Cashew tree (Anacardium Occidentale), is a tropical evergreen native to the Americas but is now widely cultivated in Asia and Africa . It is a short, stocky, low-spreading, evergreen tropical tree. Four centuries ago, the adventurous Portuguese came sailing down the Indian coasts and brought with them this valuable treenut "Cashew", the Favourite nut of the world. Cashew came, conquered and took deep roots in the entire coastal region of India . Cashew found the Indian soil more homely than its homeland. Later it spread as a popular crop to other parts of India.
Seed is found in the lower portion of the cashew apple . Cashew in its natural form is a soft, white, meaty kernel covered by a testa membrane contained within the thick hard outer shells of kidney shaped seeds which protects the tasty kernel from the ravages of nature until it is processed.
India is the largest grower , processor and exporter in the world . It is also interesting to understand , that the new statistics of consumer interests done during 2009 has proved India is also the number one consumer of cashew kernels in the world overtaking USA.
Cashew kernels is consumed all over the world as a premium snack and nowadays more used as a preferred ingredient due to its excellent flavour and unique texture in large array of foods like sweets , dates, ice-creams and so on . It can be dry or oil roasted , salted , coated with chocolate , spices , honey etc.