Harvesting and Using Carob


| 5/9/2017 12:00:00 AM


As much as I love chocolate brownies, the carob version is a nice, healthy alternative which exercises our skills of foraging and utilizing wild-growing foods. The pods of the carob tree are rich in minerals and vitamins, and can be utilized to make tasty, naturally-sweet powder that is often used as a cocoa/chocolate substitute. As a bonus, unlike cocoa, carob is naturally sweet, so when using it I can cut back on added sugar.

Carob trees grow all over Israel (and in similar climates), and the dark brown pods can be picked in the summer. They keep extremely well, so you can pick a big bunch and then process it at your convenience. Make sure the pods you pick are ripe. They are supposed to look and feel dry and to come off easily from the tree. Choose the biggest, shiniest, healthiest-looking pods.

Wash the pods and boil them for around 30 minutes to soften them. This way they will be easier to de-seed. Cut them lengthwise with a sharp knife, remove the seeds, break into pieces and place on a cookie sheet. Dry in the oven on low heat, or in the sun. The pod pieces should be really crisp, but not burned.

Throw your dried carob pieces into the food processor. Once you have mostly powder, sift to remove any chunks that are left, then return them into the food processor and repeat.

carob powder



Above: carob powder in process of making. Note it's still a little chunky. 



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