December 24th, 2018

If you haven't tried jicama give it a try. I tasted my first jicama over ten years ago and I just love it. Other names for jicama include yam bean, Mexican potato, Mexican water chestnut and Chinese turnip. It's the root of a plant that produces beans similar to lima beans. Has a globe-shape to it with papery, golden-brown skin and interior flesh that is juicy yet crunchy, with a slightly sweet and nutty flavor. It tastes like a cross between a potato and a pear/apple. Originally grown in Mexico, jicama eventually spread to the Philippines and Asia. It requires a long growing season with no frost, so it thrives in locations that are warm year-round.

The nutrient profile of the jicama is very impressive:
Most of its calories come from carbohydrates. The rest are from very small amounts of protein and fat, with a significant amount of fiber.

One cup (130 grams) contains the following nutrients:
Calories: 49
Carbs: 12 grams
Protein: 1 gram
Fat: 0.1 gram
Fiber: 6.4 grams
Vitamin C: 44% of the RDI
Folate: 4% of the RDI
Iron: 4% of the RDI
Magnesium: 4% of the RDI
Potassium: 6% of the RDI
Manganese: 4% of the RDI

Jicama also contains small amounts of vitamin E, thiamine, riboflavin, vitamin B6, pantothenic acid, calcium, phosphorus, zinc and copper.
Definitely a weight loss-friendly food as its low in calories and high in fiber and water. Just one cup (130 grams) contains 17% of the RDI for fiber for men and 23% of the RDI for women.

Jicama is also an excellent source of vitamin C, an essential water-soluble vitamin that acts as an antioxidant in your body and is necessary for many enzyme reactions.

Jicama Slaw with Toasted Buckwheat and Crumbled Feta Cheese

Serves 4
Ingredients:
¼ cup buckwheat groats
6 cups Jicama, peeled and cut into thin strips by a hand or better still on a mandoline
¼ cup red onions, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon freshly chopped mint
1 tablespoon freshly chopped cilantro
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 lime, juice and zest of
Sea salt
Freshly ground pepper
½ cup feta cheese, crumbled

How to make:
Place a dry skillet over a medium heat on the stove, add the buckwheat and lightly toast, stirring often, until fragrant, about 4 minutes. Transfer the toasted buckwheat to a plate lined with a paper towel and allow to cool.
Place the jicama, red onions, mint, cilantro, oil, lime juice and zest in a large salad bowl; season with sea salt, black pepper and toss gently to combine. Scatter over the crumbled feta cheese and cold toasted buckwheat, serve.

Enjoy,
Chef Mark .

Copyright © 2018 Mark Allison