All Things Kakadu Plum23/06/2015
The Kakadu Plum is one of the most powerful superfoods on planet Earth. Gee, it definitely sounds exotic when you put it like that, but funny enough this mysterious fruit is natively grown where the sand is red, the sun is harsh and the Koala’s are cute. You guessed it; it comes from the very midst of our Australian outback.
Considered a gift of the Dreamtime, this native gem contains nutritional qualities that far surpass many of its famous, foreign superfood opponents that currently occupy our supermarket shelves and pantries. It’s however unfortunate to learn that most Australians have never even tasted it.
What positions the fruit as such a dominant superfood contender is its powerful nutritional, and antiseptic properties. As a generous source of folate, Vitamin E and iron, the Kakadu Plum commands attention in the health food industry.
To put its dietary assets in perspective, consider the below:
- Kakadu Plum possesses remarkable antioxidant properties, being 5.2 times more potent than the blueberry
- It has the highest recorded levels of Vitamin C of any fruit in the world (up to 100 times the Vitamin C content found in an orange!)
- Its medicinal properties are well renowned, being an antibacterial, antifungal and antiviral agent
- 100g of Kakadu Plum contains the same amount of folate found in broccoli
So how is it that a fruit that is a) obtainable from our very own native land, and b) one of the most nutritionally dense foods in the world, is yet to steal the superfood spotlight from international contenders such as Goji Berries, Quinoa and Cacao? As Australians, we tend to opt for produce internationally sourced due to the exotic appeal, however exotic doesn’t necessarily mean superior, the proof being in the Plum.
A Brief Kakadu History
The roots to the Kakadu Plum – A.K.A the Bush Plum, Billygoat Plum, Gubinge, Murunga or Kabiny Plum – exist far up in Northern Australia. Throughout the ages, from March through June the fruit has been harvested and consumed by the locals.
Having played a chief role in medical practice and dietary sustenance for the aboriginal people over this time, it was a key player in helping to sustain indigenous communities for over 50 000 years, along with other delectable bush foods – you heard right, 50 000 years and we’re only just catching on!
So It’s Good For You, But Does It Taste Good?
The answer is ‘yes’!
Resembling the delightful aroma of stewed apples and pears, with some cooked citrus and floral musk essence, it introduces a unique and tangy punch to your palette. The Kakadu flavours have in fact been compared to that of the English gooseberry.
The fruit can be used in cooking to add a cutting flavour to your dishes or added to smoothies, shakes and snacks in its powdered form as a sustenance boost. However you consume it, its juicy, intoxicating flavours are bound to be mouth-watering.
Where Can You Get Your Hands on This Australian Gem?
The Australian Superfood Co (founded by Hayley Blieden, Accredited Practising Dietitian and Nutritionist) have made Kakadu Plum available through their Australian Bush Food range. With Raw Bars and Freeze Dried Fruit Packs, you’re able to purchase these nutritional delights online or at selected health food stores.
But we aren’t the only ones benefitting from this bush tucker initiative that introduces such a hugely undervalued fruit to the Australian commercial food industry. The Wadeye community where the Kakadu Plum is sourced (and who have a shocking 4% employment rate) are seeing rapid improvement in sustaining sufficient education, employment and health conditions from new jobs being created in harvesting and picking the Plum.
The Palngun Wurnangat Association (the women’s organisation The Australian Superfood Co works alongside), have found that the harvesting and picking of the Kakadu Plum is one of their greatest success stories in preserving and promoting indigenous culture and fostering self-sustaining organisations run by, and for, the Indigenous people. This venture has so far provided up to 200 seasonal jobs, and helped to get more Aboriginal children going to school.
As you can see, this rich history of the Kakadu Plum, its social, economical and cultural contribution to the Wadeye community, combined with its unparalleled nutrient concentration makes the Kakadu plum a superfood in every sense of the word. Native, delicious and nourishing, it should be a staple ingredient in all Australian pantries.Community