I am a real fan of super- nutrient rich foods, from beetroot to baobab, I find that including these nutrient rich foods in some way, everyday in my food, helps me feel assured that I am being provided with a good cross section of essential nutrients.
I thought I would share one of my all-time favourite super foods with you, the fruit of an ancient African ‘tree of life’, the baobab tree, also known as the ‘calabash tree’! There are different species of baobab tree, the most common with only one species found throughout Africa; six species found in Madagascar; and others are also be found in parts of the Caribbean, India (called Gorakh imli) and Austrailia. They store massive amounts of water in their stems to cope with seasonal droughts and it has been documented that in the 16th century, baobab fruit was on sale in Egyptian markets, coming from the south in Sudan. Every part of the fruit can be used and the outer shell of the baobab fruit is hard and waterproof and made into all kinds of domestic articles like castanets.
The tree’s fruits are large pods known as ‘monkey bread’ and their yellow-creamish fruit pulp inside the pod, which surrounds the black seeds of the fruit, is made into baobab fruit pulp powder. Baobab is packed with nutritional goodness, a heaped tablespoon of baobab powder mixed into a smoothie or sprinkled over your raw cereal provides 33% of your Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) of fibre. Fibre in the diet helps to aid healthy digestion. The range nutritional health benefits include:
– more than 10 times the antioxidant level of oranges
– 6 times more vitamin C, helps skin, bones, blood vessels, gums & teeth need vitamin C to stay healthy – more than twice the calcium level of milk
– soluble fibre in fruit pulp has pre-biotic qualities and stimulates good bacteria in gut
– high in potassium, important for brain, nerve and muscle function
Additionally baobab fruit pulp powder has:
- An ORAC of Over 1,400 per gram
- ORAC is used to measure the antioxidant levels in foods
- Baobab Fruit has more than DOUBLE the antioxidant levels of Acai and Goji berries
- More Than 6 times the antioxidant levels of Cranberries, Blueberries and Pomegranates
- More Than 6 times the Potassium of a Banana
- More Than 6 times the Vitamin C of Oranges
- Baobab Fruit is 50% Heart Healthy Fiber
- Ounce for Ounce, As Much Magnesium As Coconut Water
- Twice as Much Calcium as Milk
- More magnesium than spinach
- Antiviral properties
Baobab fruit pulp powder is a very versatile ingredient for raw food, not only does it add nutritional goodness, but it enhances the taste of food as well. It can be blended into just about any drink and food – making it an excellent everyday health boost. Simple ways to boost your breakfast with baobab fruit powder includes:
- Stir a tablespoon into a smoothie or fruit juice and taste the difference!
- Zap up your breakfast raw cereal or oats porridge by adding a generous sprinkle.
- Blend into your raw coconut yogurt to add an exotic twist. Serve with chopped fruit.
- Add to homemade raw breads – Mix some baobab powder in and boast the nutritional value of every slice you have. Spread liberally with a raw baobab fruit pulp spread and enjoy.
- Create healthy treats by adding it into your raw cookies and ice-cream
Baobab fruit is now widely available in the UK and is being added to dozens of products and stocked in many retail outlets, including Harrods and Planet Organic. I like the Aduna brand of baobab, which I have been using for a while now. It is ethically sourced from Northern Ghana and produced under strict production methods. It has a great taste and Aduna call their baobab ‘the spirit of Africa’. Sistahintheraw customers and subscribers are being offered a discount on their on-line purchase of Aduna baobab products. Use the code ‘Sistahintheraw’ at the on-line check out.
Enjoy a blissful baobab 1st of December Sunday!
Book for the next class, ‘Spirit n’ Spice’ on 7th December 2013:
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