Before we delve into baobab powder, let’s first understand the (tree of life) itself, as the baobab tree is commonly known. Baobab trees are native to Africa, Madagascar and Australia, and are classified as long-lived deciduous, small to large trees with broad trunks and compact crowns. Baobab trees exist in a variety of species and they all produce a baobab fruit that is hard to crack.
Every part of the baobab tree - leaves, fruit pulp, seeds and bark - has been traditionally used for food, medicine, and to make household goods like woven baskets, rope, cloth and fishing nets.
The fruits (pulp) have been a delicacy for thousands of years amongst African communities, for example in (East Africa), where they are consumed as red sweets commonly known as mabuyu/ ubuyu, in Swahili:
They have also developed into a most sorted after superfood, all over the world, especially in their powder form: which is added as an ingredient when preparing juices, smoothies, and salads. To get the baobao fruit pulp, crack open the hard outer shell of the baobab fruit, and get to the already dried inner softer part.
The bark of the baobab tree was always turned into rope, clothing, woven baskets and fishing nets whilst the fresh leaves have always been eaten to boost the immune system and remedy digestive problems for millennia amongst the communities.
Wherever it grows across the continent, the baobab tree is a staple food as every part of it is consumable. The leaves can be used fresh (above) or as a cooked vegetable similar to kales. When the leaves are dried, they become a great thickener for sauces, soups and stews.
Baobab powder is a rich source of vitamin C, which contributes to normal energy release, immune function and a healthy, glowing skin. It is also almost 50% fiber (two thirds soluble and one third insoluble, making it a powerful prebiotic); and contains more antioxidants than any other whole fruit.
Healthy benefits of baobab powder include:
- Help in weight loss by promoting feelings of fullness
- Help balance blood sugar level
- May reduce inflammation
- High fiber content this helping to promote digestion
- Promotes glowing skin
- It has prebiotic fiber that helps balance the gut microbiome
- High levels of vitamin C ensure your immune system can do its job.
Here are links taking you to some recipes, on how you can use baobab powder as an ingredient.