Gabon Nut

Appears in

Oxford Companion to Food

Oxford Companion to Food

By Alan Davidson

Published 2014

  • About

gabon nut borne by the tree Coula edulis, which grows in W. Africa from Sierra Leone to Angola. It is not cultivated, but the nuts are an important part of the diet of the people in some regions, e.g. the Cabinda district of Angola.

The tree is not related to the true walnut, but its fruits and their kernels look like walnuts, so are sometimes called ‘African walnuts’. The flavour is milder, between that of hazelnuts and chestnuts. The kernels are eaten boiled or roasted, sometimes mixed with meat and sometimes fermented by being buried in the ground. They yield an oil which can be used for cooking.