17-10-2017 by redazione
Perhaps that cucumber aftertaste for a moment can leave you distracted, but in its sweet-and-sour bouquet you can also hear files, passions and bananas. We are talking about Kiwano, also called "horned melon".
Belonging to the family of the Cucurbitaceae, the Cucumis metuliferus is the fruit of a climbing plant native to this part of Africa, although its popularity owes to when in the thirties it was imported into Australia and New Zealand. There he was baptized as such because once cut, he resembled the kiwi.
The shape is that of an elongated egg, like a large fig tree of India. The skin is hard, smooth and sprinkled with small thorns that look like horns (and make this fruit particularly decorative.
The colour is bright green when still unripe, orange yellow when the fruit is ripe.
Kiwano contains a glossy green gelatinous pulp sprinkled with small edible seeds.
The taste is original, pleasant and refreshing, in fact Kiwano is considered a natural thirst quencher.
It is rich in water and for this reason it is rehydrating and remineralizing, in fact it is used as a source of water by the Kalahari desert populations.
The fruit can retain large quantities of water during the dry season and grows even under difficult conditions.
It has good amounts of vitamin C and vitamin B6 and is an excellent source of trace elements, especially magnesium, calcium, potassium and iron.
All parts of the plant are used in traditional medicine in South Africa.
The fresh leaves is used against fatigue.
The skin is consumed dried or cooked, used for dietary purposes and, thanks to its antioxidant properties, it is used to counteract free radicals. Many African tribes even use it to treat gonorrhoea.
The high content of dietary fibre promotes the intestinal transit of food.
It thus prevents constipation and the formation of intestinal gases with consequent benefits for the digestive process.
Recent studies have shown that kiwano intake has beneficial properties for hormone regulation.
Especially adrenaline and stress hormones.
If you are anxiously stressed, kiwano consumption can help to soothe your mind and spirit. It has a good zinc content, an essential mineral in our diet as it plays a role in protein production. It also intervenes in the repair of wounds and blood cell formation.
Although in many African countries it is cooked whole (roasted or boiled with vegetables), the kiwano is ideal to eat fresh.
To open the skin halfway, it is essential to be careful and equip yourself with the appropriate tools, especially not to point with the thorns.
Kiwano pulp can be used as an alternative to vinegar for salad dressing, or added to creams, yoghurt, fruit salads.
by Leni Frau
It is one of Africa's least known but healthiest fruits. In Kenya almost no one plants it but it grows mostly wild...
On the African shores of the Indian Ocean, the combination of fish with fruit has always been...
In Kenya they call it the fruit that protects it, but the properties of the papaya are many and not only limited to its emollient and anti-ushion properties on the body, or to the digestive, purifying and laxative properties if...
In Kenya, there are many fruits that those living in Europe have had the opportunity to see, and even less to taste.
Alongside the most well-known ones, such as mango and pineapple, there are also strange fruits that we would...
by Freddie del Curatolo
Until 30 years ago, Kilifi was the Happy Valley on the Kenyan coast.
An ancient Swahili legend tells us that before the arrival of the Portuguese, the indigenous people of the Kenyan coast did not eat avocado but used only oil, because they considered it neither fruit nor vegetables.
by Leni Frau
Often on the stalls of the local markets of the coast of Kenya find a variety of vegetables that may look like small zucchini, but then if you see it up close, with its grooves and shape slightly elongated, understand...