Mesquite, also referred to as Western honey mesquite, glandular mesquite, honey mesquite, tornillo, screw bean mesquite, prairie mesquite, and velvet mesquite, is a staple product used by the desert dwellers and has been a staple food of Native Americans during the past 2000 years. Mesquite pods were commonly consumed by the Hopi, Pima, Apache, Yuma, Maricopa, Mohave, and Cahuilla tribes from many centuries.
The ripened seed (bean) pods of the Mesquite tree are used and the seed pods are selected based on quality and are washed in water. The pods are then dried and ground at a low temperature into a fine powder or flour. Mesquite flour/powder contains abundant protein, magnesium, calcium, potassium, zinc, iron and lysine amino acids. It is a safe, high protein food that aids in maintaining stable blood glucose levels. Mesquite powder has a sweet, caramel-like and nutty flavor. It is a good flour alternative for raw recipes and it is used in drinks or smoothies. It is rich in dietary fiber, has a low GI rating and suppresses hunger for sustained periods.
What is it good for?
Mesquite powder contains various nutrients such as amino acids, vitamins and minerals. It contains calcium content that helps to maintain bone strength, healthy skin and hair. It is rich in dietary potassium, which maintains healthy heart function and ideal fluid balance. It contains the mineral zinc, which helps to maintain a healthy immune system. It also contains abundant dietary fiber, lysine, iron and magnesium. It contains a natural sugar, fructose that aids in maintaining stable blood sugar levels. It has a glycemic index of 25 and it is a healthy flour alternative for diabetics.
Mesquite powder is a gluten-free, high protein food. It is high in fiber and is slowly digested in the body. It suppresses hunger by causing stomach fullness. Hence, it is recommended for dieters. It is a very versatile, healthy sweetener that easily blends with shakes and beverages. It is a healthy substitute for flour that requires no sugar usage and can be used in raw desserts. It can be used with cacao/cocoa powder for health benefits and added taste. It is a natural flavoring agent as well.
How is it used?
Mesquite powder has a sweet, caramel taste. Hence, it is used in nut mylks, ice cream, desserts, drinks, smoothies, baked foods and cookies as well as being an excellent flavouring for (raw) granolas and breakfast cereals.