Jicama is also known as Mexican yam beans, Mexican potato, or Mexican turnip. It is the edible starch-filled tuberous root of a yam bean. It is the root of the jicama plant that produces beans similar to lima beans. Jicama is similar to a potato or turnip.
The starch-filled tuber is filled with nutrients that assist the human body in staying healthy and fit. Jicama is exceptional and the taste, flavor, and texture might be confusing to home cooks that haven’t tried it before. In this article, the nutritional benefit is enumerated, and the great feeling jicama brings to your taste buds is clearly explained.
What does jicama taste like? The root of the jicama plant, which is the only edible part, has a slightly sweet and nutty flavor when carefully prepared. Its flesh is juicy and crunchy. Some people think jicama tastes like a cross between a potato and a pear, while others compare its taste to that of a water chestnut.
Jicama has a starchy-white interior with golden-brown skin. Jicama is low in sugar, making it a perfect carbohydrate preference for people attempting a low-sugar diet.
Jicama’s mildly sweet taste and satisfying crunch expose it to a variety of culinary uses. There’s no need to fret over the taste of this sweet and nutrient-packed tuber. Put away your doubts and try it out today.
Nutritional Benefits of Jicama
While enjoying the savory taste of your delicacy, you should consider how beneficial it is to your health. Jicama has an outstanding nutrient profile. It contains a healthy amount of vitamins, minerals, and a high amount of fiber. It has low-calorie content which is gotten from carbs, protein, and fat. It is a great source of minerals like iron, folate, magnesium, and potassium.
Jicama contains vitamin C, vitamin E, selenium, and beta-carotene which serve as antioxidants. They are beneficial to plant compounds that help protect against cell damages by counteracting free radicals in the human body. The antioxidant-rich food also helps combat oxidative stress that leads to chronic diseases.
The edible root helps attain sustainable heart health. The iron and copper present in jicama is responsible for a healthy red blood cell which improves the circulation of blood in the body. It also contains potassium, which helps reduce the risk of having heart diseases and shock by lowering blood pressure.
Jicama contains a lot of dietary fiber. It helps food move smoothly through the digestive tract and increases the bulk of stool. Jicama also helps you reach your daily fluid needs and ease constipation as it has high water content.
Culinary Uses of Jicama
One of the beauties of jicama is its versatility in usage. Are you one that doesn’t like eating your food alone without condiments? Don’t worry, a jicama is a great option for you!
Jicama can be eaten raw by chopping or added to your salad, crudites, platters, and sushi rolls.
It can be steamed, fried, boiled, or sauteed to be eaten with spice. You can enhance the taste of a lot of cuisines with the cooked jicama. Top your cornmeal-crusted tilapia sandwich with a creamy coleslaw of shredded jicama.
International dishes also go well with jicama. You can give your spicy chicken and black bean tostadas an enticing aroma and spectacular taste with the addition of jicama. Serve your jicama coleslaw on top of this Mexican cuisine. You can then enjoy it with a side of tomato-avocado stacked salad.
You can substitute half of the potatoes in half brown with perfectly shredded jicama. Also, give your seafood salads and egg a delicious crunch that won’t affect its original flavor by adding jicama to it.
Where Did Jicama Originate From? How Do You Procure It?
It is an important food crop that was originally grown in Mexico and central and south America. Due to an increase in its demand, the growth eventually spread to the Philippines and Asia. Jicama is grown as an annual plant even though it is a perennial vine. The growth of jicama is favored by a warm temperature.
Its germination requires a long growing season with no frost. The root of the jicama plant is the only edible part of the tree, as its seeds, leaves, and stems contain rotenone which is poisonous to human health. You can find jicama all year round in its preserved state in most grocery stores, supermarkets, and Latin American markets.
Buy a firm and dry jicama root and make sure it is not shriveled, bruised, or blemished. If you would want to preserve your jicama for future consumption, keep it unpeeled in an airtight plastic bag in the freezer for about 2 weeks before it loses its quality.
Is Jicama Better For You Than Potato?
Yes, it is. Jicama belongs to a bodybuilding class of foods. It is a starchy root vegetable that has a better, sweeter, and juicier taste than potato. The sugar and calorie content of jicama is very low compared to potatoes. It is a healthy choice for people who need low-sugar food.
Facts You Don’t Know About Jicama
- If left to grow, the jicama plant can reach 20 feet in height. It has a deep green color and has three leaflets.
- Jicama is pronounced ‘Hik-ka-ma’ and Pachyrhizus erosus is the scientific name of the plant.
- It is a tuberous vegetable with large subglobose shaped like a large turnip that weighs about 3kg or more, depending on its size.
- Jicama is the main ingredient in the Malaysian cuisine known as popish and a Chinese salad called yusheng.
- There are two main varieties of the jicama plant; Pachyrhizus erosus and Pachyrhizus tuberosus which has a larger root.