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In Surla, vegetable from wild garkani seed a Diwali treat

In Surla, vegetable from wild garkani seed a Diwali treat

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08 Nov 2018 No comment 10 hits

KERI: In Surla, a village situated on the highest altitude in Goa, locals celebrated the festival of light on Tuesday by relishing a specially cooked vegetable of wild garkani seeds along with dishes made from puffed rice.
Surla in Sattari, lying in the lap of the Mhadei Wildlife Sanctuary, is known for its natural beauty. The food habits and cuisine here for the villagers have been influenced by the availability of wild vegetables, tubers and fruits.

Every year on the occasion of the Diwali, villagers make it to the nearby forested areas and bring back pods of Entada rheedii. This pod is put into the fire of a makeshift oven and is heated for some time. It is then pounded and the seeds are left to soak for 10 to 12 hours in water. Later, these seeds are removed and cut into pieces and mixed with onions, chillies and common salt for taste. The mixture is cooked and when ready the vegetable is relished along with various dishes made from puffed rice.

Entada rheedii is a large woody liana or creeper with large seed pods that can grow up to 200cm long and 15cm wide. The seeds have a thick and durable coat. The bark and seed are a source of saponins (chemical compounds found in various plant species and make foam when shaken with water) which are used as a soap for cleaning clothes, washing hair as well as skin. Entada rheedii has many uses amongst indigenous tribes in Africa. The seeds contain a sticky turbid oil, saponin glucoside and alkoloid.

Ramesh Zarmekar, a wildlifer from Surla said, “Though the raw seeds are poisonous as they contain saponins, the villagers in the forested area with their traditional knowledge, cook the vegetable that possess nutritional and medicinal values only and is served during Diwali.”

Rajaram Gawas a villager from Surla says, “Since the past we are preparing the vegetable dish made from garkani seeds on the occasion of the Diwali. We have maintained this tradition till date.”

In Goa, the seed is known as garkani in Konkani, where as in Marathi it is called as Garambi. In Verle of the Netravali Wildlife Sanctuary sweet dishes are prepared on various festive occasions.

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Source: In Surla, vegetable from wild garkani seed a Diwali treat

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