Book VIII, Chapter XLIII
Of the tree called mamon and its fruit, from which, lacking corn, the Indians make bread in times of famine.
Translated by Ella Nguyen ’23
In the province of Venezuela, on the mainland, there are many trees as large as a fine laurel, and very similar to them in the leaf. This type of tree is called there by the Indians mamon. Its fruit is the size of a walnut: it has a green rind, as thick as the edge of a silver real or a quarter of this coin, which is worth four maravedís; and after removing this thick green cover, it has a somewhat tart meatiness and not a bad taste. The kernel is as big as a hazelnut, and from its pits, roasted and grounded, the Indians make bread to eat in times of famine, as they do from the kernels of other wild fruits; and they make do with it and it meets their needs when they lack corn and other provisions. The bread is not good tasting, although it is healthy, and they do not rely on it except in times of necessity.
 Melicoccus bijugatus
Image: Lithograph of the mamon plant by Etienne Denisse published in Flore D’Amerique in the 1840s.