Guaje pronounced Gwah-hee and also known as Leucaena leucocephala is a tree in the acacia family that grows all over the world. It might even be growing in your area, they grow in California, Texas, Florida, Hawaii, Brazil, Australia, Mexico, South America, Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands, Israel, Philippines, Asia, Thailand, Laos, Burma, India, and Africa. So guaje can be found all over the world and have many health benefits. And guaje seeds are free food!
Long Slender Seed Pods – Guaje trees have long slender seed pods that have green or reddish edible seeds inside that are very tasty.
High in Protein – Guaje seeds are high in protein making them very important for those who want a little more protein in their diet. Gujae seed contain from 30% to 60% protein depending on where they grow.
Taste – Guaje tastes like a combination of garlic, pepper, pumpkin seed, avocado, and okra all mixed together, very interesting and lovely flavor. If the seeds are roasted they become very sweet and nutty and even more tasty. And in Mexico the seeds are roasted and salted and eaten as a wonderful snack called “Cacalas”, and they are even used in guacamole and salsa and used in combination with egg dishes for breakfast. And guaje seeds can be used as a substitute for fava and lima beans in lots of different dishes. And in Thailand guaje seeds are a daily part of their dietary regiment.
Using – Normally when the seed pods turn brown the seed pods are opened and the seeds can be eaten raw or roasted. And the green seed pods can be opened and the seeds roasted and then eaten. And the raw seeds can be popped like popcorn. And in Mexico guaje is a staple food that’s been used for hundred of years.
Contains – Guaje seeds contain 30% protein, calcium and phosphorus for strong bones, some iron for anemia, almost 2% potassium for good heart contractions and water regulation, and magnesium for enzyme production.
Culinary Uses – Guaje can also be roasted and used in casseroles, salads, soups, stews, made into bean cakes, and tempe, it can be added to beef and pork dishes, and just about anything one can think of.
Makes a Wonderful Gluten Free Flour – Guaje makes a wonderful tasting flour that can be used for making cakes, breads, fritters, used with root veggies, with rice, omelets, curries and other dishes.
High in Saponins – Guaje seeds are also high in saponin agents which are powerful antioxidants which help to prevent disease.
Coffee Substitute – Guaje can be roasted and ground like coffee, and then used as a great tasting caffeine free coffee substitute.
Leaves are Edible – Also guaje leaves are tender and edible – just pull off some of the leaves and boil them in water and perhaps add some salt and lemon juice and place them in a tortilla as they do in Mexico and they are delicious.
Used for Making Jewelry – In some areas of the world guaje seeds are used for making great looking jewelry and ornaments.
Used as Livestock Feed – Guaje pods are also used as livestock feed because of their high protein content.
Side Effects – Guaje does contain a small amount of toxin as do many other common foods we eat on a regular basis, but if cooked all of these toxins seem to disappear. And soaking, boiling, fermenting, and other cooking methods eliminate the toxins. But if eaten in moderation these toxins do not accumulate and cause problems for most people. And many people have been eating guaje for hundreds of years… and live to be 100 years old and thrive.
Under Utilized Food – In this day and age with food shortages all around the world, it’s important to find other sources of protein and nutrition which will do the body good. And guaje might be another free food that we’ve over looked and need to look at again and embraced.
Finding – Guaje Seeds and Pods can be found in Asian and Latin Markets. And if you google “Buy Guaje Seeds” lots of places that sell these wonderful seeds will come up.
On the average most people eat about 6 to 8 foods all the time, the same foods every day, and it’s important to broaden our culinary perspective because every food contains different trace minerals, proteins, and healing agents. Thus the more different foods we eat the healthier we become. We live in the garden of eden full of thousands upon thousands of wonderful plants that bring all kinds of great nutrients to our table, and it’s important to take advantage of everything that Mother Earth has to offer.
Dr. Paul Haider – Master Herbalist
Feel Free to Share – This information is meant to get you started… so you can do more research on your own… dig a little deeper and find what works for you. This article is for educational purposes only, I strongly recommend that you seek advice from your own GP, private doctor, or medical specialist for any ailment, illness, or medical condition.. this article not meant to be a scientific analysis in any way, shape, or form.
Dr. Paul Haider – Master Herbalist and Spiritual Teacher for over 25 years, helping people to recover and feel healthy. You can also find Dr. Haider on FB under Dr. Paul Haider, Healing Herbs, and at www.paulhaider.com – feel free to connect with him any time.
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