Buddha’s Hand Fruit-Know About The Exotic Fruit
When you talk of exotic fruits you can’t miss out on Buddha’s hand fruit. It has yellow tentacles that resemble human fingers and probably that is why it is called Buddha’s hand in prayer. For the Chinese it has a religious connection. It is said to bring good fortune.
Buddha’s hand has its origin in the Himalayas. Botanists are not sure if it is native to India or China.
How to check for ripeness in Buddha’s hand fruit?
The waxy flesh of the fruit has to be yellow or bright orange in colour. The skin shouldn’t be dry or limp. Buddha’s hands, when ripe are wonderfully aromatic and are known to fill the room with their lemony perfume. To check for ripeness, just scratch the skin gently, if oil gets collected under the fingertip, the fruit is ripe.
How does it taste?
Buddha’s hand fruit is as zesty in flavour as lemons are. It also a bit like oranges . However, the fruit is not as sweet as oranges and lacks bitterness that is linked with most citrus fruits. The fruit is extremely fragrant. Those who have used it for cooking feel that it has tones of coconut, banana, cinnamon and light caramel.
Nutrition facts of Buddha’s hand fruit
1 teaspoon of the rind of the fruit has the following:
1 g of carbs
1 g of fibre
13% RDI of vitamin C
1% RDI of calcium
Health benefits of Buddha’s hand fruit
As per Chinese superstition, the Buddha’s hand brings luck, peace and properity to a person. Just like peaches, gourds and pomegranates, Buddha’s is also a a feng shui fruit.
The fruit is known to act as a tonic, stimulant and an expectorant. Chinese medicine uses the fruit as a remedy for chest pain, bloated tummy, anorexia, vomiting, cough and lung problems.
Medical studies show that Buddha’s hand has a lot of beneficial flavonoids that have a number of benefits to offer.
- One study done in 2013 says that essential oils present in this fruit display anti-inflammatory activities
- In 2009 a study found that it has chemical compounds that have the ability to ward off cancer.
- A 2007 study says that the compounds present in the fruit inhibit the onset of diseases like Alzheimer’s disease and diabetes.
- Buddha’s hand is abundant in vitamin C and according to a 2011 study it alleviates symptoms of asthma.
Storing the fruit
You can keep Buddha’s hand for 1-2 weeks at room temperature. If you keep it I the fridge at a temperature ranging between 7 and 9 Celsius, the fruit can last upto a month. Avoid placing it in a hot and humid place or else it will get rotten.
Recipe ideas with Buddha’s hand fruit
- You can add finely ground Buddha’s hand to tea, juice, smoothies or to water also.
- In spite of having religious significance, it is ironically used to make cocktails.
- The grated rind can be used in soy sauce dips, tamarind pastes and dtae based sweets.
- You can make a citrusy salad dressing by combining the rinds with oil, sugar, salt and lemon juice. Marinate the mixture in a bowl for best results.
- You can sprinkle the grated fruit on top of cupcakes and baked goodies.
- It can be used to make a vegan cheesecake.
- You can make jam and marmalade with it too!
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