Last week I was at The Eden Project for their Harvest Festival. What a great weekend it was. I was in the Harvest Demo Dome talking to people about Baobab and of course demonstrating some dishes to try.
This superfruit is cropping up all over the place as its health benefits – long-known in Africa – are being recognised by us health conscious Westerners. The fruit comes from the ancient Baobab tree and contains a powder with tonnes of vitamin C – six times more than an orange actually.
I took the Baobab challenge
I was challenged by the team at Eden to create some recipes using the Baobab powder. I opted for one sweet and one savoury. As you know I have an abundance of courgettes from the allotment so I experimented with it in some Courgette Bhajias. They were amazing! I was so surprised at how the citrusy flavour merged with the lemon in the recipe to give it a really unusual tang. I served these with some Tomato and Baobab Chutney.
Sticking to the courgette theme I also served up a Chocolate Brownie Cake with Baobab and Chocolate Frosting and some hot Baobab Blueberries. It went down very well with the folk who came to see the demo. The Baobab in the frosting replaced the need for cream cheese making the topping much lighter – a perfect blend for the hot blueberries on top.
The quiet but incredibly brave Rosby from Malawi
A highlight for me was meeting Rosby from the Baobab project in Malawi. Rosby had never been away from her village before and I wondered what it must have felt like to her being in England. One thing she did tell me was that she herself did not realise all the health benefits and that she’d be educating the folk back home.
Eden supports villagers like Rosby in Malawi to harvest the fruit powder which is then sold in the Eden shop. Some money goes to PhytoTrade Africa, who help support rural harvesters and producers across southern Africa. There is also a Baobab tree in the Rainforest Biodome with a Baobab Smoothie Bar closeby so you can get a glassful of the health benefits while you walk round.
So if you’re already feeling sniffly with the cold autumnal weather,it’s worth hunting down some of this powder. Sprinkle it on your morning muesli and you’ll be well on your way to beating the colds and flus off.