JUJUBE FRUIT



The jujube is a little known fruit. It has been used for thousands of years in Asian countries for its medicinal uses. Since last few years nutritionist noticed them for high amount of vitamins and minerals they have. It has calming properties and is a good source of natural antioxidants.

BOTANICAL NAME – Ziziphus jujuba

The Indian variety is Zizyphus martiana

FAMILY NAME – Rhamnaceae




DESCRIPTION –

This tree is small, evergreen but of variable size, up to 15 meter or more with a spreading crown and stipular spines. The naturally drooping tree is graceful, ornamental and often thorny with branches growing in a zig-zag pattern. The small, ovate or oval leaves are 1-2 inches long and a shiny bright green. In the autumn, the leaves turn bright yellow before falling. There are usually two spines at the base of each leaf. Flowers are greenish yellow, in axillary cynes.

Fruits are round to elongate and from cherry-size to plum-size depending on cultivar. The immature fruit is green in color, but as it ripens it goes through a yellow-green stage with mahogany-colored spots appearing on the skin as the fruit ripens further. The fully mature fruit is entirely red. Shortly after becoming fully red, the fruit begins to soften and wrinkle. One of its most popular uses is as a tea for sore throat.




Read more about benefits of this fruit in next article….


DISTRIBUTION –

This fruit originated in China where they have been cultivated for more than 4,000 years. The plants traveled beyond Asia centuries ago and today are grown to some extent in Russia, northern Africa, southern Europe, the Middle East and the southwestern United States. They are found both wild and cultivated throughout the world. They ascend to an altitude of 1,500 meter in the Himalayas. It is known and grown in the Indian subcontinent since 9000 BC.

PARTS USED –

Fruit, leaves

PROPERTIES –

Astringent, Stomachic

FORMS OF USE –

Fruit as such, leaves decoction



PRODUCTS / PRESERVATION –

Large sized fruits, which just begin to turn yellow, are chosen for canning. They are deeply pricked and soaked in 2% common salt solution. The concentration of the salt solution is increased every day by about 2% till it becomes 8%. Fruits are then transferred to fresh 8% salt solution, also containing 0.2% of potassium meta-bi-sulfite, and stored for 1 to 3 months. The fruits are now washed in water till they become tender, and canned in the usual way in hot sugar syrup containing citric acid.

Red and black varieties are most popular varieties of this fruit. It’s tea syrup, juice, wine are some of the popular products. Let us first take a look at

jujube Nutrition Facts in the next article....




Health Benefits of Jujube Tea

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