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DISCLAIMER: These pages are presented solely as a source of INFORMATION and ENTERTAINMENT and to provide stern warnings against use where appropriate. No claims are made for the efficacy of any herb nor for any historical herbal treatment. In no way can the information provided here take the place of the standard, legal, medical practice of any country. Additionally, some of these plants are extremely toxic and should be used only by licensed professionals who have the means to process them properly into appropriate pharmaceuticals. One final note: many plants were used for a wide range of illnesses in the past, but be aware that many of the historical uses have proven to be ineffective for the problems to which they were applied.




CAROB
LEGUMINOSAE
aka Algaroba bean, Bahrout (Arab), Locust Bean, Locust Pods, St.John's Bread, Sugar Pods
(Ceratonia siliqua)
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A branching evergreen tree to 30 feet with a dense crown which is native to the eastern Mediterranean region. Leaves are alternate, even-pinnate, leaflets in 2 to 3 pairs; flowers are small and red in short latereral racemes on old wood being bisexual or unisexual and calyx tubular and 5-lobed with no petals and 5 stamens; fruit is a flat, leathery, edible legume to 1 foot with sweet pulp between the seeds. The pods possess a chocolate-like flavor and appear commercially in cut or powdered form, either raw or roasted.

PROPAGATION: By SEED, under glass; by CUTTINGS over bottom heat.
NEEDS: Well-drained soil in frost-free area. Cultivation is similar to oranges. Greenhouse plant in the north.
PART USED: Fruit, seeds



USES

MEDICINAL:
The powder has been used to treat diarrhea.
Has been used to replace chocolate for hyperactive children.

CULINARY:
Used as a flavoring where a chocolate taste is desired.
Fermented to make an alcoholic beverage.
A flour is made from the fruits.
Carob gum is obtained from the seeds.

ANIMAL:
Pods used as animal fodder for livestock.

OTHER:
Once believed to clear the voice of singers.
Once used by jewellers as a carat weight.





©2005 by Ernestina Parziale, CH

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