When Vogue reports on a new superfood you know it’s only seconds away from becoming the next health trend du jour. Tiger nuts have recently become popular due to the recent interest in gut health as they are a fantastic source of pre-biotics and boast impressive fibre quantities. But before we get into all of their amazing health benefits, let’s start by telling you what on earth they are.
What is the Tiger Nut?
Although their name would suggest otherwise, tiger nuts are not in fact a nut at all, they are small peanut-sized tubers – root vegetables – that are found in Northern Africa, Southern Europe and the Middle East. They acquired the tiger part of their name due to the stripes that are found on the nut-like root vegetable. Tiger nuts have been revered for their health benefits for thousands of years – as a staple food of our ancestors, illustrations of the plants have been found in ancient Egyptian tombs and traces of them have been discovered on prehistoric tools. More recently, they became popular during the war as a snack that replaced candy as they have a sweet, nutty flavor that makes them incredibly moreish. Plus they are gluten free – unlike oats, which are often contaminated with gluten.
Why Are Tiger Nuts Healthy?
Tiger nuts are really high in gut-loving fibre – more so than famously fibrous oats or chia seeds. They also have a high magnesium content, which is great for building strong bones and maintaining a healthy blood sugar level. Plus, they have large amounts of wrinkle-fighting Vitamin E. But what they are really revered for is that they are one of the best whole food sources of resistant starch – a specific type of starch that is a prebiotic, meaning it feeds the good bacteria in the digestive system promoting good gut flora and, in turn, a healthy, happy body!
So How Do You Eat Them?
Both whole and peeled tiger nuts can be eaten straight out of the packet but whole ones are best soaked overnight. They taste slightly sweet and ever so ‘coconutty’.
We spoke to Tom from Na’vi Organics (https://www.naviorganics.uk/), who sell a range of tigernuts, to find out a myriad of ways that they can be eaten:
“Whole tiger nuts make a deliciously, creamy tiger nut milk (see recipe from Saskia of Naturally Sassy below). I’ve also recently been soaking them overnight and then putting them under the grill for 5 to 10 minutes, which makes a great crunchy snack, similar to popcorn. The peeled tiger nuts are great to munch on for a tasty energy-boosting snack. You can also buy tiger nut flour, which is a great gluten-free alternative to traditional flour, and can also easily be used to make muesli and porridge – making it a real heart-warmer for the wintry mornings ahead.”
Our favourite way though is to drink their mylk – and we turned to Naturally Sassy to find out how to make it:
Tiger nut milk recipe
2 cups tiger nuts
4 cups water
Nut milk pulp bag/ muslin cloth
2 medjool dates, pitted
a pinch of cinnamon
- Add the tiger nuts to a jar and fill high with water. Put in the fridge to soak overnight (I do this for 24 hours).
- Drain the tiger nuts and add them to your blender with 4 cups of water.
- If trying out a seasonal twist add in the pitted dates and cinnamon now.
- Blend on a high-speed for around 3 minutes until blitzed.
- Pour through a nut milk pulp bag/muslin cloth, squeezing the bag to get all the milk out.
Keep in a air-tight bottle and store in the fridge.
Where To Get Your Tiger Nuts in the UK
It hasn’t taken long for London to jump on board this new superfood trend, here are our faveourite places to find this new ‘nut’ friend:
Daylesford Organic Tiger Nut Drink 500ml, £5.49
Raw, unpasteurized and made with filtered water, tiger nuts and Himalayan pink salt, the Daylesford Tiger Nut milk has a shelf life of 10 days (homemade tiger nut mylk has one day). www.daylesford.com
Farmacy, Westbourne Grove, London
On their breakfast menu is the most delicious ‘Rawnola’ made from sprouted buckwheat granola and served with housemade tigernut milk and fresh fruit!
Pick up a bag of tiger nuts from Na’vi Organics from just £3.45. They make a delicious snack or follow the recipe above to make the mylk. As a special promotion, H&H readers can receive 15% off all Na’vi products – just use the code “NAVIHEALTHY” at the checkout… https://www.naviorganics.uk/
Title image: Naturally Sassy