Moringa in Casco Viejo

Panama, Casco Viejo, Casco Antiguo

The first time I heard the name was buying tea at Casa Sucre. Alyce had this “Moringa” tea that tasted great and apparently was not only good but super good for you. The name sounded so funny and the photo of the leaves seemed familiar, just I couldn´t place it in my mind. But then my husband pointed out to me: remember that tree Spencer planted in Calle 4ta that he said it is being proposed as the solution to malnutrition in Africa? I couldn´t believe it, the famous “Tree of Life” was right in front of me!Researching in youtube, I see that it can be propagated by sticking a branch on the ground. The leaves have kind of a nutty taste, but just like watercress you might find it quite spicy if you eat the stems, so watch out. Don´t over do it!

In Wikipedia, I find that this plant has a ton of everything, quoting here:

“The leaves are rich in protein, vitamin A, vitamin B, vitamin C and minerals. 100g of fresh Moringa leaves have 8.3 g protein, 434 mg calcium, 404 mg potassium, 738 μg vitamin A, and 164 mg vitamin C Feeding the high protein leaves to cattle has been shown to increase weight gain by up to 32% and milk production by 43 to 65%. The seeds contain 30 to 40% oil that is high in oleic acid, while degreased meal is 61% protein. The defatted meal is a flocculant and can be used in water purification to settle out sediments and undesirable organisms”

From Tree of Life.org I learn that it has: 7 times the vitamin C of oranges, 4 times the vitamin A of carrots, 4 times the calcium in milk, 3 times the potassium in bananas and 2 times the protein in yogurt.

So now I`m using it on tea, salads, stir fries and smoothies.  Try it out! if you want to plant a branch let us know and we`ll give you a stick.

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