Tuesday, 3 February 2015

Birinda Saaru-Seasoned Kokum Water

Garcinia Indica or Kokum/Birind(Konkani) in common, is mainly used in the cuisine of  Konkan region of India.The fruit belongs to Mangosteen family.The pulp of the fruit is used in preparation of fruit juice/squash which has a bright red colour of its own.The rind of the fruit is sun dried and preserved for anytime use.This dry rind has a sour taste and acts as a good substitute for tamarind.Kokum has cooling effect on body during summers and also helps to aid digestion.It has antioxidant,antibacterial,anti-carcenogenic and anti-inflammatory properties.It is low in calories and high in dietary fibres and vitamin C.
This is a simple saaru(or something like rasam)which has a good blend of all tastes in it prepared by soaking dry rind for few hours which gives a rich colour to it.

Kokum dry rind(birinda sola)           5-6
Salt                                                                to taste(1tsp apprx,can > or <)
Jaggery powder
(light brown sugar)                                 2tsp                                     
Green Chilli(slit)                                       1
Water                                                            500 ml
Asafoetida/hing(optional)                  2 pinches

For seasoning:
Ghee(clarified butter)                         1tsp
Jeera(cumin seeds)                             3/4tsp
Red chilli(broken)                                1
curry leaves (broken)                        3-4

  • Soak the dry kokum rind in 1/4 cup warm water for 2-3 hours.
  • Take the soaked rind (which is bright beetroot red in colour)in a soup pot.
  • Add salt,jaggery,slit green chillies,asafoetida and water,bring to a good rolling boil.
  • Lower the flame and allow it to boil for 5-10 minutes.
  • Meanwhile in a small seasoning pan heat up the ghee.
  • Add broken red chillies,sauté,toss in the jeera and let crackle,add curry leaves.
  • Pour this over the cooking saaru.
  • Serve as a warm beverage or can mix up with rice along with a subzi,papad and pickle on side.

  • Sometimes the rind will be very sour in which case the sweetness has to be increased.
  • This saaru should taste tangy,sweet and spicy(khatta,meetha and theeka).
  • As the rind gets older the red colour diminishes,so,better stock in freezer.
  • The fruit is generally sun dried in summer every year,so the earlier the better is the colour.

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