Date Tree – The Tree of Life
Dates have been a staple food in the Middle East for thousands of years. In fact, a date tree is known as the “tree of life” because the tree and its fruit have so many uses.
Nomadic life and trade was made possible in these dry and hot regions of the Middle East by relying on dates. Just a cup full of dates per day would provide enough calories and nutrients for human survival.
The wood of the date palm has provided an important source of building material. Leaves were also used to make baskets, ropes, etc.
Dates, a superfood
Dates contain potassium and fibre, they also provide calcium, zinc, iron, copper, magnesium and other minerals. Recently, dates have even acquired a superfood status as they are a powerhouse of energy. They are also used as natural sweetners for smoothies, cakes and desserts..
Serving dates for all occasions
Visiting a Middle Eastern country, you will notice that dates and coffee are served at all events, whether that is a funeral, a wedding or just a family meeting.
Dates, a deadly weapon
However, did you know that dates were once used as a deadly weapon? In ancient Oman, rulers had an ingenious military strategy. They built forts with holes in the ceiling, they added “falling shafts” and then poured down thick, boiling hot date syrup onto any invaders who made it inside the fort.
Watch the video below about a date plantation in Morocco which gives further information about harvesting dates and different kinds of dates.
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