The natives of Peru have grown and harvested maca root since approximately 1600 BC. Also known as Peruvian ginseng, Maca root is believed to help improve stamina and endurance, increase fertility and promote overall physical well-being. Maca also is extremely nutritious and contains protein, fibre and calcium. People consume maca root in many forms, including as a ground powder. Most find that maca powder has a sweet flavour that blends well with all sorts of dishes. You can use maca powder in drinks or even add it to your favourite recipes to reap the many health benefits it is said to offer.
Mix 5 ml (1 tsp) of maca powder with 500 ml (2 cups) of warm or cold water. Stir vigorously and then enjoy.
Make a cup of your favourite tea and add 5 ml (1 tsp) of maca powder. Stir and add lemon to taste.
Prepare a cup of hot cocoa and add 5 ml (1 tsp) of maca powder. Stir and drink on cold nights.
Pour a glass of milk and stir in 5 ml (1 tsp) of maca powder. Some people also like to add a small amount of sugar.
Maca courgette bread
Preheat your oven to 180 degrees C (350F).
Combine 125 ml (1/2 cup) maca powder, the flour, brown sugar, baking soda, cinnamon and nutmeg in a large bowl. Add the raisins and chopped nuts to the dry ingredients.
Beat 2 eggs in a separate bowl. Add the milk, apple sauce, vanilla extract and grated courgette. Stir the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients until they are thoroughly combined.
Grease a baking tray and pour in the bread batter.
Bake in the middle rack of the oven for 30 to 40 minutes. A knife inserted in the centre of the bread should come out clean.
Allow to cool, then slice and enjoy.
You can buy maca powder at most health food shops.
Maca root is also available in a liquid form, capsules and tablets.
Try adding maca powder to your favourite recipes. Substitute 15 ml (1 tbsp) of maca powder for 15 ml (1 tbsp) of flour for each serving.