Saturday, August 30, 2014

Saaranai Keerai| Trianthema portulacastrum | Bishkhapra or punarnava

Saaranai Keerai, mom plucked in hot noon sun, hence leaves are like this

Warning!!! don't ever eat this keerai, without boiling it in tamarind juice or cooking properly, for it has something like pirandai, could be oxalic acid, making throat feel something. The itchiness of throat is not like that of pirandai, it is mild, very much bearable.

Saaranai Keerai
Lunch today:
Mom started and ended lunch with vellam kolukattai
Kootu Poriyal: Carrot Slices, saaranai keerai kootu, velai poosanikai kootu, vendika poriyal.
Kolambus: Periyamma had got murungaka from native place, so murungakka sambhar, thippili lemon rasam, mor kolambu, curd.

Didn't touch curd or mor kolambu, for its no curd fast till September 5th. Folks drink buttermilk, however have been keeping away from buttermilk also.

     Tasting thippili gives an effect, which has to be seen on my colleague's face to understand. Lemon thippili rasam, with a bit of ghee, was too good. Thippili makes tongue feel so clean and fresh. Saaranai keerai and kurinja keerai were introduced by the same aunty.

     Mom knew what was saaranai keerai, but this was the first time, both of us were eating it. So i asked mom, how do you know it is indeed saaranai, she said, she knew. It grows spreading on the ground.

    Quite a lot of research has been done on what is actually punarnava - is it Boehavia diffusa or Trianthema portulacastrum? Mahesh et al state that saaranai is an adulterant to Mukkurttaikodi i.e. punarnava, possibly possessing same properties.

Medical benefits:
decoction of roots to treat asthama and constipation - ethnobiomed, biomedicalcentral, globaljournal
analgesic, stomachic, laxative, treatment of blood disease, anemia, inflammation, and night blindness - phcogrev

The plant is alexiteric, analgesic, stomachic, laxative, alterative; cures “Kapha,” bronchitis, heart diseases of the blood, anemia, inflammations, “Vata,” piles and ascites. The plant has been used in the indigenous system of medicine for the obstruction of the liver asthma, amenorrhea, dropsy, edema, ascites, and beri-beri. A decoction of the herb is used as a vermifuge and is useful in rheumatism; it is also an antidote to alcoholic person.

     Won't ever forget how it made my throat feel, goes to the pirandai class on special processing.

     Was reading out tamizh names listed in ethnobiomed, and when i was reading aloud vasambu (Acorus calamus); mom said, don't take its name; almost like Harry Potter's Voldemort. Her reasoning was, it you say its name, its medicinal properties will be ineffective. If anyone goes to a medical shop, they will ask, give me peru solladha marundhu, instead of asking for vasambu. If vasambu is taken in excess, it will result in stammering it seems.

       Reminds me of varali, one raga that teacher is not supposed to directly teach student, for it results in enmity between teacher and disciple. Funny!!! vasambu, varali, both starting with va.

No comments: