Thursday, 4 July 2013

Bael Sherbet - Wood Apple Summer Cooler




Come summers and if you are living in the countryside, you are likely to spot lush green bael trees profusely laden with bael fruits standing tall in sharp contrast to the otherwise parched landscape. As summer peaks and then recede by the welcome pre-monsoon showers, the bael fruits begin to ripen.  Before rains, sun-ripened baels begin to fall from the trees.


Bael is known as Bilwa and Sriphala in Sanskrit. It is known as Wood apple in English. Bael tree is one of the most useful medicinal plants of India. Its medicinal properties have been in the ancient medical treatise in Sanskrit- Charak Samhita. Bael fruit has immense health benefits. It is rich in beta-carotene, thiamine, riboflavin and Vitamin C. It is also a good source of proteins, iron, phosphorous, calcium, niacin and oxalic acid. Bael is a liver and cardiac tonic. The pulp of the ripe bael is useful in irritable bowel syndrome. Bael is regarded as the best natural laxative. It cleans and tones up the intestines.
Bael tree laden with fruits

Ripe bael fruit is eaten plain. It is also used to make jam. Most popular way of enjoying the fruit is in the form of sherbet. A glass of cold bael sherbet is so soothing and comforting when the temperatures soar and the heat becomes unbearable.

There are two bael trees in my father’s garden. In the fag end of summers, ripe bael fruits keep falling from the trees. My kids love to run and collect bael when they hear the “thump” sound of the bael falling from the tree. Last summers, I made Bael Jam (Wood apple Jam)
Bael sherbet is made regularly during summers.  
You may adjust lemon and sugar according to your taste. Sugar can be avoided if the fruits are sweet.


Bael Sherbet – Wood apple Summer Cooler

Ingredients


  • 1 ripe bael fruit
  • Sugar
  • Lemon juice (2-4 teaspoons)
  • Water

Instructions


  1. Break the Bael shell. Scoop out the pulp in a steel container.
  2. Add one glass of water and mash well with hands.
  3. Strain to remove seeds and fibrous strands.
  4. Add sugar to taste. You may add honey in place of sugar.
  5. Add water to get desired consistency. Keep it a little thick.
  6. Add lemon juice. 
  7. Refrigerate.
  8. Serve cold.










6 comments:

  1. What an amazing fruit! As an horticulturalist I am very interested in fruit and vegetables. We are trying to grow as much of our fruit and veggies as we can from seed and I have lots of chestnut, walnut and hazelnut trees that I grew. Thank you for sharing this amazing fruit and that wonderful recipe. I doubt I will ever get to see a Bael fruit, but you just never know ;)

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  2. Omg, am missing this wood apple here, sherbet looks seriously fantabulous Namita..Can u send me some..Would love to drink this beautiful sherbet.

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  3. Interesting... I havent heard of this fruit but your write about is so enlightening and that glass of chilled juice is so inviting! :) And I love the new look on your blog Namita. Neat and classy :)

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  4. Looks very good and refreshing.. Lovely color Namita :-)

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  5. i never knew we cook use wood apple for cooking or drinks...wonderful

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