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Macadamia nut is the fruit of the macadamia tree in the family Proteaceae, native to eastern Australia, New Caledonia and Sulawesi. Out of the nine species in the genus Macadamia, only two species, Macadamia integrifolia and Macadamia tetraphylla, are of commercial importance. The rest of the species possess poisonous and/or edible nuts, due to the presence of cyanogenic glycosides, a toxic compound.
Macadamia nuts are highly nutritious nuts, contain the highest amount of monounsaturated fats. The nuts also contain 9% protein, 9% carbohydrates, 2% dietary fiber, as well as calcium, phosphorus, potassium, sodium, selenium, zinc, iron and vitamin E. Macadamia oil is also sought after in the skincare industry, containing 22% of Omega-7 palmitoleic acid, and makes it a botanical alternative to mink oil.
Macadamia nut has an extremely hard shell, but can be cracked using a blunt instrument, such as a hammer or a custom-made macadamia nutcracker.