Let's get one thing cleared up straight away, cause if your mind is anything like mine, I know exactly what you’re thinking…
The tigernuts we're talking about here do not come from any part of a tiger's anatomy!
Now that we've got that cleared up... let's talk nutrition!
Tigernuts (also known as chufas) are not actually nuts. In fact, they're tubers that grow beneath the dirt just like potatoes and are classified under the sedge family, making them an excellent alternative for those with nut allergies.
These mini tubers are round and have little craters all over; their skin is an earthy orange-brown, while underneath they are creamy-white. Once dried they become quite hard, so they're best enjoyed after re-soaking, anywhere from 12 - 48 hours.
The medicinal benefits of tigernuts date back thousands of years. It's said they were even used by the ancient Egyptians, and it comes as no surprise that these little tubers have been deemed a superfood - they pack a serious nutritional punch! They're rich in many nutrients, including vitamins A, B, C and E, as well as calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus and glutamic acid (an amino acid and neurotransmitter crucial for healthy brain development and function). They also contain beneficial fats, including the monounsaturated fat, oleic acid, which has anti-inflammatory effects and supports HDL (the good cholesterol). Plus tigernuts contain three different digestive enzymes and are very high in fibre, especially resistant starch, making them a very beneficial prebiotic and a great food to incorporate to aid in digestion and gut health.
Tigernut Milk (commonly known in Spanish as Horchata de Chufa) is easy to make and is so incredibly delicious. The hardest part is waiting for them to soak, as mentioned above they are quite hard and best soaked for at least 12 hours but preferably 24 - 48 (it just gives the milk that perfectly smooth, creamy richness). If you’ve been let down by other plant-milks, give this one a try! Tigernuts truly do make a smooth, creamy and slightly sweet plant-milk, perfect for teas, coffee and even drinking on its own!
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