Traditional foods we grew up with have a lot going for them. Not only are they delicious, and an important part of our heritage and culture, but many of them are good for our health too.
With our urban lifestyles of today and the temptation of fast foods like burgers, chips and fried chicken, we can miss out on the benefits of the traditional dishes we grew up with. One of these dishes is cow heels. In this article we shine a spotlight on the health benefits of cow trotters, also known as cow heels or amanqina enkomo. By highlighting cow heels' benefits, we hope that more city dwellers will return to the delicious and nutritious recipes of their childhood.
From London To Jozi, Amanqina Are Making A Comeback
According to Hazelann Williams, a food reporter in London, cow heels are making a huge comeback as part of the nose to toes food movement which promotes eating the entire animal and leaving no wastage. Internationally and here, bone broth health benefits are widely claimed making it increasingly popular among the health conscious.
Back home in rural South Africa people have been enjoying amanqina enkomo or trotter stew for generations. Some South Africans take this traditional gem of a meal for granted and have no idea how nutritious it is. So what is in cow heels that makes them so good for your health?
Are Cow Heels Healthy?
An amanqina recipe is usually high in protein, and contains gelatin, calcium, amino acids alongside important nutrients and minerals like magnesium, phosphorus and selenium. So yes, a steaming bowl of cow’s heels is certainly good for you!
Bone, Hair And Nail Health From Gelatin
The gelatin you get when you eat amanqina is good for bone health, because it is rich in protein which contains the amino acid tryptophan. This amino acid assists the body in resisting osteoporosis by boosting bone collagen and helping to reduce pain and inflammation.
What is more, gelatin strengthens nails and assists hair growth. Collagen also helps improve your skin’s elasticity and has anti-ageing properties. In short, if you want to have glowing skin, hair and nails amanqina should be on your menu more often.
Micronutrients That Improve Well-Being
The micronutrients on offer are a benefit of cow heels often overlooked. Rich in zinc and magnesium, cow trotters stew helps boost the immune system to fight illness.
Phosphorus helps the body build healthy bones and teeth, while selenium is a powerful antioxidant that helps boost the immune system.
Bone Broth Health Benefits
Bone broth is full of calcium, a vital ingredient for bone strength. The other great thing about foods rich in calcium is that it assists in the healthy functioning of the heart, muscles and nerves.
A Vital Building Block
The protein found in your cow heels stew is a vital building block for your body. Protein assists in the production of cells which make up muscles, bones, blood, skin and cartilage. Protein also helps the immune system function at its best and helps defend the body against illness.
Traditional Food For A Nourished Family
Our forefathers might not have known just how much cow heels benefit our health, but they knew that trotters taste delicious. The mouth-watering flavour of amanqina was a good enough reason for them to indulge back in the day, and it’s still great today.
Inspired? Try our recipes here