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Oxford Companion to Food

Oxford Companion to Food

By Alan Davidson

Published 2014

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agave a tall perennial plant, of which there are many species in the genus Agave, almost all originating in Mexico or nearby regions. Some, notably A. americana and A. deserti, yield food. They are often called maguey.

Four major parts of the agave are edible: the flowers, the leaves, the stalks or basal rosettes, and the sap.
Each agave plant will produce several pounds of edible flowers during the summer. The starch in the buds is converted into sugar, and the sweet nectar exudes from the flowers.