Cookbooks can serve as a source of inspiration. Sometimes a recipe reminds us of foods we love but have forgotten and other times they pique our culinary curiosity to try something new. The goal of In the Kitchen is to explore exquisite, easy to prepare simple foods — whether they are new to us or not. Enjoy!

Walnuts are awesome. Period. They taste amazing raw by the handful and they can boost already great foods like fudge and banana bread. What would baklava be without walnuts?? (Oily filo and honey…)

Not only that, they look like brains and seemingly helps support brain function. (Read more about that HERE.) How cool is that? For optimum nutritional absorption soak walnut in water for 30 minutes before eating.

But there is one way walnuts rise to the top, earning the honorary title “One of the Great Delicacies Known to Mankind” and that is pan fried with oil and salt — and if you can hold off from eating them while they cool — served with cheese!

Experience has shown (and an online search of “walnuts and cheese” has confirmed) that fried walnuts paired with a thick slice of English cheddar, Spanish manchego or Italian Parmesan cheese is utterly food stomping delicious. Seriously, they are astoundingly good!

DIRECTIONS: Slowly cook walnuts in a frying pan with a little olive oil until they’re a few shades darker but not burnt. Sprinkle salt at some point. Remove from heat, let cook and serve on a fancy dish with slices or chunks of cheese.

(Does food taste better when served on a fancy dish or platter? Does a fancy dish elevates the eating experience making it more memorable? What do you think?)

Amazingly tasty food doesn’t require rare ingredients, sophisticated cooking techniques or even a lot of time. It can be as easy as pairing two easily obtainable, readily available, pleasantly affordable, simple foods — walnuts and cheese.

When you eat this great treat remember to slow down, close your eyes, taste the food and enjoy the experience.