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Brazil nut, common name for the Lecythidaceae, a family of tropical trees. It includes the anchovy pear (Grias cauliflora), a West Indian species with edible fruit used for pickles, and several lumber trees of South America, e.g., the cannon-ball tree (Couroupita guianensis), some species of Barringtonia, and the Brazil nut (Bertholletia excelsa). The latter is found chiefly in Brazil along the Amazon and Orinoco rivers, but extensive groves have also been planted in N Bolivia. The edible Brazil nuts grow clumped together in large, round, woody and extremely hard seed pods the size of a large grapefruit. The meat of the seed (the “nut”) is very rich in oil. The Brazil nut family is classified in the division Magnoliophyta, class Magnoliopsida, order Lecythidales.
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Brazil nut[brə′zil ‚nət]
Bertholletia excelsa. A large broad-leafed evergreen tree of the order Lecythedales; an edible seed is produced by the tree fruit.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
1. a tropical South American tree, Bertholletia excelsa, producing large globular capsules, each containing several closely packed triangular nuts: family Lecythidaceae
2. the nut of this tree, having an edible oily kernel and a woody shell
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005