Gerelli's peanut glossary


From Peru via Brazil, Mexico and finally Spain, the peanut made its way across the world.

The peanut has its origins in the Andes of South America. Researchers found peanuts there dating from around 7,800 years ago. The plant probably originated in Peru or Brazil. Peanut-shaped pots, as well as jugs decorated with peanuts, were found that were around 3,500 years old.

As early as 1500 BC, the Incas in Peru used peanuts as offerings, burying them with their mummies to support their loved ones in the afterlife. European explorers first discovered the peanut in Brazil. When the Spanish began their explorations of the New World, peanuts were grown as far north as Mexico. The explorers took some to Spain with them. From there, peanuts spread to Asia and Africa. Africans were the first to introduce and import peanuts to North America around 1700.

The peanut is a legume.

A nut that’s not a nut.

The peanut is not actually a nut. From a botanical point of view, peanuts are legumes, like beans or peas.

When the fruit is planted in the ground, it goes through various growth stages. The fruit growth stage has something unusual about it. The fruits grow in the earth, hence the German name “Erdnuss” (earth nut). The name “peanut” combines the words “pea” and “nut.” It is sometimes also called “groundnut,” for obvious reasons.

Spanish Nüssli

Nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition!

Although it was the Spanish that discovered the peanut, it only has a passing connection with Spain. The European adventurers discovered the peanut in the 16th century in the markets of the Andes. Spanish conquistadors brought the fruit into circulation. But it was probably not until the late 18th century that peanuts arrived in Europe, via the French colonies. In Switzerland, peanuts are often referred to as “spanische Nüssli” (Spanish nuts). The adjective “Spanish” is commonly used here as a synonym for “alien, different” or “incomprehensible.” So these nuts that came out of the ground were hard to classify, foreign and outlandish.

It is also important to know that there is a variety of peanut called “Spanish peanut.” So the name of the variety could also have had an influence on the name generally used in Switzerland to denote all peanuts.

All peanuts are not created equal



How many peanuts to the ounce?

The size, or grade, of the peanuts in their shells (or just the kernels) is worked out from the number (“counts”) per ounce (28.35 g).
That means that the bigger and therefore heavier each peanut is, the fewer of them it takes to make up an ounce on the scales.
So the number of in-shell peanuts is given in “counts per ounce,” also known as the caliber.


Real energy boosters

Peanuts contain many valuable nutrients. The combination of fats, calories, unsaturated fatty acids and minerals makes them into real energy boosters. Many independent studies prove that a small amount of peanuts daily can make all the difference. They protect against heart attacks, diabetes and strokes. The nutrients are preserved even after roasting.

Peanuts are an excellent source of magnesium. This makes them the perfect snack during mental or physical exertion.