There is a special tree with edible, well basically edible everything. You can strip off the fibrous bark and throw it in a stew. You can eat the leaves (most peoples preferred method) and even the roots are nutritious! In fact the leaves are becoming a health sensation throughout the world with demand steadily growing. The tree also has pods that are edible as well as the seeds within these pods. With one tree you have five possible sources of food. This is pretty amazing. The oil from this tree has actually been shown to be able to be used as a biofuel! I am totally geeking out over here!
So no more secrets, this amazing tree is called Moringa Oleifera. The percentages of nutrients from one serving of the tree leaves are astounding.
- 125% daily value of Calcium
- 61% daily value of Magnesium
- 41% daily value of Potassium
- 71% daily value of Iron
- 272% daily value of Vitamin A
- 22% daily value of Vitamin C
- All 9 essential amino Acids!
- 8.3 grams of protein* Percentages from www.naturalnews.com/022272_Moringa_medicinal_herbs.html
The leaves are the easiest and most accessible to use in the United States. They also pack a punch nutritionally! If you order or purchase the full leaf it is recommended to be cooked like spinach, or crisp them slightly in the oven. Use them in your favorite salads or as a side dish. One popular cooking method I have found is making the leaves into a sauce for meat!
For more recipes on how you can cook up some Moringa take a gander here!
Where to Find Moringa
This took some dedicated research. Whole Foods and Rainbow do NOT carry them, however a lot of Chinese, Pilipino or Indian Markets will! The trick is they have them under a different name, Malunggay. This is apparently the Tagalog word for Moringa. One place that actually has them is Duc Loi Supermarket in the Mission. The people here are extremely helpful!
For more information on this amazing tree I recommend checking out these websites.
3. Natural News