Maca is a root vegetable belonging to the same family ascabbage, broccoli and radish.The Maca root grows underground and swells during growth, forming a storage ocean like a turnip. Maca is a hardy plant, native to the Andes.It grows at high altitudes of between 4000-4500m in extreme conditions of intense sunlight, strong winds and low humidity, as well as daily temperature fluctuations of 20°C to -10°C. Thought to have been cultivated for over 2000 years, Maca has been used for food and medicinal purposes since the pre-Columbian era. The Spanish settlers soon came to value Maca; shortly after their conquest, Spanish livestock was reproducing poorly at altitude. The local Andeans recommended Maca as a fertility enhancer, which proved to be a very successful suggestion, saving the herds.Legend has it that Inca warriors used to consume Maca as an energy source before going into battle. They were, however, prevented from consuming it after conquering a city, in order to protect women from their sexual impulses.
Maca has been used as an ingredient for centuries. The most common use for Maca is to throw it into a blender with a heap of other ingredients and create a smoothie. It’s perfect as part of a breakfast blend, a post-workout shake, or an antioxidant smoothie. Great with cacao, Maca tastes lovely in a warm drink during those long winter evenings. If you’re feeling peckish and a drink won’t suffice then Maca can be stirred into yoghurt, or combined with a spread to slaver over toast. Maca is a useful baking ingredient and can be used in all kinds of dessert recipes, from cookies to brownies and everything in between!