How to make Kunun Aya (Tiger Nuts Milk)
Tiger nuts, Horchata de Chufas in Spanish are abundant most especially in Nigeria and I personally used to eat lots of them in my younger days. Though I have not been able to have them in years till my friend recently reminded me of these great nuts.
The Tiger nuts have a nutty milky taste. I can’t even imagine anything that tastes nourishing as it. Not only do they taste really nice, the nuts are fully jam-packed with lots and lots of health benefits which might be of primary interest to you.
To eat it as a snack, you just gently chew and suck on the chaff then spit out the chaff. It’s a thing of truth that some people actually swallow the chaff but it is quite difficult for me to swallow that. This is best eaten with peanuts (groundnuts) and the chaff will be softer and easier to swallow, this great tip was from Oluwayemisi and it works!
If you happen to buy these nuts outside Nigeria, chances are that they will be dry for sure. All you need do is Soak them in plenty of cold water overnight before attempting to munch or feed on them.
Another way to enjoy these nuts is to soak, blend and strain them to get the very delicious and refreshing Tiger Nuts Milk, known as Kunun Aya in Hausa and Horchata de Chufas in Spanish.To blend it, you’ll need a kitchen blender. My blender has 600W power and it did a great job of blending the soaked nuts. To strain it you’ll need a chiffon cloth or ladies stocking/tights (pantyhose without the panty).
Other names for Tiger Nuts
- Aki Awusa in Igbo
- Aya in Hausa
- Isip Isong in Efik/Ibibio
- Ofio in Yoruba
- Hausa Groundnut in Pidgin
- Keegun in Okun
- Chufas in Spanish
Where to buy Tiger Nuts
There are 2 varieties of tiger nuts: brown and black. Both are readily available in Nigeria but I think the brown ones are more common outside Nigeria. Both taste the same to me.
- In Nigeria, Tiger Nuts are sold by Hausa Mallams on the streets and in all major markets in Nigeria. You can also buy coconuts and dates (dabino) from them.
- In Spain, look for them in any Frutos Secos shop i.e. shops that sell dry fruits. Ask for chufas.
- In the UK you can buy them on Amazon UK website.
- In the US, you can buy them on Amazon US website.
Benefits of Tiger Nuts
Tigernut oil is used in the cosmetic industry. As it is antidioxide (because of its high content in vitamin E) it helps slow down the ageing of the body cells. It favors the elasticity of the skin and reduces skin wrinkles.
It supplies the body with enough quantity of Vitamin E, very essential for fertility in both men and women.