Farmizen - Ice Apples (Noongu/Tadgola) - Natural | Express Store | Bangalore
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Kamalesan M

Ice Apples (Noongu/Tadgola) - Natural - 10 pc

Fruits

Love ice apples ? But don't want to put the effort of getting them out of the fruit ? Don't worry - we got you covered.
Kamalesan and his wife Jeeva, will extract the ice apple fleshy seeds and pack them, so you can enjoy them at your home, minus all the effort !

These ice apples are sourced by Kamalesan from marginal farmers in Mettur area of Tamilnadu.

Very few fruits conjure up a picture of summer as mangoes do. Whether it’s in the form of milkshakes or aamras, the heat-inducing pulp sits on a pedestal around this time of the year. But there’s a universe of fruits out there, some even more weather-appropriate for India’s rising temperatures than the king of fruits. One such is the ice apple, more commonly known as tadgola. 

The fruit is snuggled in little pockets of the hard brinjal-coloured shell of the palmyra palm fruit. Break them in half to reveal the translucent, 2D apple encased in a skin-colour peel. The wobbly, plump parcel does its best to escape from your fingers while peeling. But if you manage to keep it from falling, a bite into the lychee-textured flesh oozes with sweet, coconutty nectar so good that it could cool you off on the harshest of summer afternoons. 

Not many refer to the fruit as the ice apple—it is believed that the British gave the fruit that name for its cooling properties. Indigenous to India and other parts of Southeast Asia, it is known as nungu in Tamil Nadu, taal in West Bengal, tadgola in Maharashtra and munjaal in other parts of India. 

While the juicy fruit found at street stalls across India is a delicacy in itself, it is whipped up to create many other dishes. In Tamil Nadu, payasam is given a twist by cooking the fruit with milk, sugar, nuts, and a little gram flour. Some prepare coolers by adding chunks of it to coconut water, and also pudding with milk, sugar and the gelatinous agar agar. In Kerala, soufflé is made of eggs, milk, nungu and gelatine. While nothing confirms this titbit, it is believed that the Bengali sweet sandesh or Jolbhora’s syrupy centre was inspired by the ice apple. 

The ice apple—the unripe baby seed—is just the beginning of the cycle the fruit undergoes. The palm fruit finds usage at every stage in many ways in different parts of India. After the monsoon, the fruit starts ripening and thus hardening. At this stage, many parts of India lose interest in it because the ice apple has dried up. But the fruit really starts to shine in Bengal and Orissa. The outer layer becomes a fibrous flesh, while the earlier pulpy centre turns into three or four hard seeds. This orange and gooey pulp that has quite a heady perfume is used to prepare unique dishes in these states. Taaler Bora or sugar palm fritters are little globes fried golden-brown. They are prepared by mixing the pulp with rice and wheat flour, jaggery and desiccated coconut and dropping them into bubbling oil. There’s also Taaler Luchi, where the fruit is added to dough to make pooris served with dum aloo. And kheer is made with the mature fruit as well—velvety custard with taal fruit, nuts and coconut shavings. 


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