|By goGreen | November 22, 2011|
- Origin: India
- Varieties: one or two
- Tree: height: up to 10.6 m
- Fruit: diameter: 8-10 mm
- Season: February and March
Although a native of India, bignay is more popular in its second home in Indonesia and Malaysia. The tree is an evergreen, with wide, dark green glossy, leathery leaves, the reddish flowers are tiny. Male and female flowers are produced on separate trees. The tree is valued for its berries which turn dark purplish red when mature. Each fruit contains a single seed imbedded in a juicy purple red pulp. The fruits are produced in clusters of 20 to 30, but all do not ripen at the same time. It is normal to find a single pendant cluster bearing a range of white, yellow, pale green, red, and black berries.
While the thin yet tough skin is colored and yields a red juice, the pulp within is white and contains a colorless acidic liquid. The fruit is more sour than sweet, and it used for making jam. In Indonesia and in the Philippines, the fruit is cooked with fish dishes and the leaves are stewed with rice and other vegetables to give flavor, or are sometimes even eaten raw.
Nutritive Value per 100g of edible part:
- Protein: 0.75 g
- Calcium: 0.12 mg
- Phosphorus: 0.04 mg
- Iron: 0.001 mg
- Thiamine: 0.031 mg
- Riboflavin: 0.072 mg
- Niacin: 0.53 mg
- The leaves of the bignay are used in the treatment of snakebite.
- Ripened fruit is eaten raw / fresh
- Taken as juice
- The juice makes an excellent syrup and has been successfully fermented into wine and brandy.
- Used in preparation of sauce for fish dishes.
- Makes an excellent jam and wine.
- Young leaves are edible and eaten with rice
- The bark contains a strong fiber which is used for making ropes.
- The reddish, hard wood has been experimented with to make cardboard.
- The bark is poisonous, containing an alkaloid.
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