Sky High with Maca Ghee

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Guest post by Claire:

Last month I was at Marion’s house when she gave me a jar of Maca Ghee. Less than an hour later she came peeking around the corner. “Did you taste it yet?” she asked, with a twinkle in her eye. “I’m really happy with this recipe. My kids eat it by the spoonful!”

Turns out Marion and her kids are on to something– this magical concoction is so delicious! Very, very easy to eat by the spoonful. The caramelly flavor of maca adds lots of body to the already luscious base of ghee. Goddess Ghee’s recipe is perfectly harmonized with organic Ceylon cinnamon and vanilla bean. So delicious that it sent me back to the label thinking, there’s no way it can be this good without added sweetener. I was wrong! It’s all about the alchemical synergy between these beautiful handpicked ingredients.

If you haven’t met Maca yet, there are a lot of reasons to get excited about this exuberant, vitalizing, adaptogenic plant medicine. Known to scientist folk as Lepidium meyenii, maca is a root crop in the Brassica family. That’s right, maca is related to that wilted bunch of kale in your fridge! But if you think her vegetable cousins are mild, don’t underestimate maca– she is a plant with some seriously potent medicine to share.

 Maca harvesting over 15,000 feet (credit:  Herb Pharm )

Maca harvesting over 15,000 feet (credit: Herb Pharm)

Native to the Peruvian and Bolivian Andes, maca likes to grow high up in the Puna, a grassland area that sits above the tree line and below the permanent ice cap. We’re talking sky high– elevations of 11,000 to 18,000 feet and sometimes higher. To give some perspective, Mt. Mitchell, the highest mountain here in Appalachia, tops off at 6,683 feet. Maca thrives in mountains twice that height! This is an extreme environment where few other plants and animals can live. Often there are strong winds, freezing temperatures, and changeable weather.

In Peru, women, men and children eat the root as both food and medicine. They feed it to their livestock to increase their fertility. Scientists are beginning to know what Peruvians already know– Maca brings vital energy to reproductive organs and supports overall wellbeing. Studies of rats show that maca increases sperm count, increases sexual behavior, reverses osteoporosis, mitigates stress and more; and in mice maca increases offspring, sexual behavior, and improves memory, just to name a few. Read more here.

 Freshly harvested maca root (credit:  Staples to Superfoods )

Freshly harvested maca root (credit: Staples to Superfoods)

The more I get to know plants the more I appreciate their capacity for embodying paradox. In this light it makes sense energetically that a plant spirit whose home is in the sky would bring forth such a wonderful grounding medicine. Maca can teach our bodies how to be resilient under harsh conditions. I like to think of her as a jolly old woman, belly shaking with soft laughter.

I notice that when I regularly take maca into my body I have lots of energy to channel into physical pursuits like dancing, hiking, yoga, and lovemaking. Not too surprisingly, since maca supports sacral energy, I also notice that maca boosts my creativity. It also makes me feel juicier. ;) There’s only one time I regretted eating maca, but it ended up changing my life: back when I was a student I had to spend 10 hours a day writing at a desk. One morning I ate a big spoonful of maca and it was like a joy bomb! It was hard to sit still, but the paper got done in the end. More importantly, I realized how stifling my student life had become. Maca’s teaching from that day began guiding me toward a more embodied life.

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Besides eating it by the spoonful, I like to blend Goddess Ghee’s Maca Ghee into my morning butter drinks. Add a few lumps to a cup of coffee or tea, then give it a whiz with the blender. The result is a delicious frothy warm drink that gives sustained energy throughout the day. Also try it as a topping for pancakes or roasted winter squash.

As the days get shorter I can’t think of a more delicious way to prepare my body for the colder months. Warming cinnamon and nutrient-dense ghee mixed with magical miraculous maca. Food as medicine at its best!


–Claire