Tenadam Ten Adam Ruta Rue
What started out as a little look into what we call Tenadam, a small plant that seems to grow all over the place in Ethiopia and mainly used as a added flavour to coffee, turned in a scientific journey on the web for me.
The first thing that i came across was the many names it seems to have. Tenadam (Amharic), Talatam (Oromo), Adams Head, Adams Health, Ruta, Rue, Ruta Graveolens and Ruta Chalepenis. Now i am not sure if all of these are correct, but this super little plant does seem to have been used in many parts of Europe, the Middle East, North Africa and of course Ethiopia for centuries.
This evergreen shrub is apparently a multi tasking wonder.
It is said to be a cat and insect repellent.
Used in Italy with Grappa (Grappa alla Ruta).
A gastric comforting herbal drink, although some people react to it in the opposite with discomfort and of course used in coffee.
Said to have been also used in cooking, it lost its appeal as of the 20th century, due to its bitter taste.
Anyway, we love a sprig or two in our coffee, plucked fresh from our garden in Addis.
I have to say i have not seen many cats in my garden but i put that down to my two dogs and not the powers of the plant.