Fruits are always termed as juicy, sweet and it takes large part of consumption by both man and animals. Most of us love to eat fruit just because of its taste and the feeling of refreshment it generates. Needless to know its health benefits, we just love to grasp our favorite fruit.
Singhara, a seasonal fruit has different story, it doesn’t look appealing, nor does it taste ‘very juicy’. Annoyingly, it often leaves black color in our hands. Yet apart from its OFFs, it has a number of ‘ONs’ as well.
English name, Water Caltrop, Singhara is an absolute seasonal fruit, mostly available after rainy season till the start of winter.
Singharas are abundantly available in and around Udaipur these days.
It is mainly cultivated in Gogunda, in Udaipur division marshy areas of Rajsamand, and Bhilwara in Mewar. In India, for more than 3000 years singhara has been a good source of fiber and vitamin B. The fruit contains minerals of calcium, iron, potassium, and zinc.
Singhara can also be related to Keer- a nomadic tribe of Mewar, known for the cultivation of Water Caltrop and Rice. Keers utilize the temporary water reservoirs created in valleys of Aravali Hills during monsoon; the water clogged in those natural catchments is used as the bed for cultivation of Water Caltrop.
By the time the temporary reservoir of water depletes, the caltrops are ready for harvest and the then remaining marshland serves ground for cultivation of next seasonal crop.
About Singhara (Water Caltrop)
Water caltrop normally breeds in still or lightly flowing water. Due to this character of the plant, high level of toxins is formed in the seeds (the only edible portion). Hence, the singharas are cooked by roasting the raw fruit, to burn the toxins and we see the green fruit black, when it reaches our hands.
Singharas are sweet and heavy, both. It also cures the phlegm in the body and eliminates inflammations, blood impurities and also help in curing diarrhea. It is very energetic and drives away tiredness and checks the flow of blood from the wounds. The juice extracted from water caltrops is very nutritious.
Water caltrops are effective and natural assistance available to mothers for breast feeding their new born. Singhara flour is used to make sweets and puris; the flour is allowable during ‘vrats’, fasting.
Nutrition & Health Benefits of Water Caltrop
A perfect fruit for those who want healthy life; Water Caltrops are almost fatless and are therefore a healthy food option; an excellent source of potassium (350-360 mg), a very important mineral for human and an ideal fruit for diabetics.
When taken in juice form, it can help ease problems of Nausea and Appetite in kids, detoxifying properties of water caltrops are considered to be good for person suffering from Jaundice, while in powdered form singhara is a remedy for cough, if taken twice a day with water.
Sales of Water Caltrop
Over a period of 5 years, a reducing trend observed in sales of fruit, shows a change of taste in people, irrespective of quality and benefits of fruit. In Udaipur, Water Caltrop is available in both cooked (black) and raw (green) form; a kilo of cooked ones are available on a payment of Rs. 70, whereas raw ones can be purchased at Rs. 55 per kg.After knowing about such a seasonal fruit; I am rushing to grab my part of it, how about you!!!!