The proper name for Cohune palm is Attalea cohune. Do you know it by either name? This tropical tree is found in Central America and Mexico. Besides a number of uses and benefits the Cohune produces a nut that is used to produce cohune oil.
The oil from the Cohune palm nut has a history of being used by cultures in Mesoamerica from the pre-Columbian time especially by the Maya. The oil which is difficult to extract from the hard nut shell has been used as a
1. Lamp oil: helps repel mosquitos
2. Soap making: creates smooth skin
3. Seasoning: a light additive to soups
4. Roofing material: tough shell
5. Wine: tropical speciality
6. Lubricant: for machinery and body.
The Maya used a process of cracking the nut shell on a rock and then boiling to extract the oil. Today we crack the nut and scrape out the soft contents to eat raw. Dogs are excellent at chewing the shell and then eating the creamy filling. It is a source of food and beneficial to their diet and fur coat.
While walking the jungle trails of paradise you have a good chance of coming upon a Cohune Palm. The easiest nuts are harvested after they have fallen to the ground. Watch for the nuts with a light colored circle at the stem to show their freshness.
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