Think of Konkan and its special food, and you cannot skip ‘Kokum’, more commonly known as Amsul in Maharashtra! Widely used in coastal cooking methods, kokum gives that amazing tangy taste when added to curries ( especially to fish curry) and varieties of dal. Sol Kadhi, a soulful drink that completes any meal is prepared by using kokum too!
Garcinia Indica, as the botanical world calls it, is a deep purple colour fruit. The natural outer cover of the fruit is dried and it is used as a spice. It gives out tangy flavour because of the presence of citric acid, acetic acid, hydroxycitric acid, ascorbic acid, malic acid and garcinol.
Kokum Sharbat/ Syrup is very popular in India especially during hot summer. Anytime better than those carbonated cold drinks or soft drinks, this kokum sharbat will not only quench your thirst, but will also protect you from dehydration and sunstroke due to heat.
So let's find more about this tangy fruit!
· Kokum juice improves the digestion and appetite. Ayurveda uses it to treat piles and dysentery.
· It helps to reduce fever and allergic reactions.
· Kokum fruit is rich in antioxidant.
· Kokum butter which is also a bi-product of kokum fruit is used widely in pharmaceutical and cosmetic industries to treat dry, chapped and sensitive skin, etc. It is a popular skin moisturizer.
· Kokum aids to weight loss.
· It also strengthens the cardio-vascular system and stabilizes liver function.
· It has anthelmintic (used to destroy parasitic worms) and anti-ulcer properties.
· It can relieve you from gastric problems like acidity, flatulence, constipation and indigestion.
· It stops vomiting sensations.
· It is low in calories and contains no saturated fats or cholesterol and is rich in dietary fibre.
· Fresh kokum fruit is a rich source of B-complex vitamins such as thiamin, niacin and folate.
Well, our older generation sure will add more to the above list! So use it in cooking or in a drink, it's definitely worth to keep a stock in the pantry!