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26 May 2019, Edition - 1412, Sunday

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Health Matters

Ajwain Leaves: Culinary And Medicinal Uses Of These Flavourful Leaves!

ndtv.com

Ajwain, or carom seeds, are very common in Indian households. The aromatic seeds are used in adding flavour to a number of desi drinks, curries and even breads like parathas. It is also revered in Ayurveda for its numerous health benefits. But not a lot of people know about ajwain leaves. Although these leaves come from different plant as the true ajwain plant, the succulent leaves are still known as ajwain leaves in the Indian subcontinent. The plant that the leaves are a part of is also known as the ‘Indian Borage,’ which is also called the ajwain plant sometimes. The leaves of this plant are the real stars. They are bright green in colour and are broad and pulpy. They have a layer of very fine and soft hair atop them, and you can access these leaves by buying a pot of the Indian Borage at any nursery or botanists.

The reason these leaves are known as ajwain leaves, despite being a part of a completely different plant, is that they have a smell that is similar to that of carom seeds. In Kannada, the plant is known as ‘saveer sambar soppu,’ which literally translates to ‘thousand utility leaf.’ The scientific name of the plant is ‘Plectranthus Amboinicus’ and can easily be grown at home or in your kitchen garden. The leaves have a number of uses and can be added to dishes of your choice to add a distinctive flavour and taste to them.

Incredible Uses Of Ajwain Leaves

Ajwain Leaves Can Be Put To The Following Uses:

1. To Cure Cold And Cough:

Ajwain leaves can be boiled with water and made into a warm concoction to remedy persistent cold and cough. If you have a pesky cold and cough, take some 10 or 12 ajwain leaves, clean them with water and then add them to a glass of water and put it to boil on a low flame. Allow the decoction to boil, until the water is reduced to about three-fourths of its original quantity. Take it off the heat, allow it to cool down a bit and then drink it for relief from cold and cough. Add a little honey to it, if you like.

2. Use It To Make Pakodas:

Ajwain leaves can be added to a spiced besan (gram flour) batter and then deep-fried to make delicious and flavourful pakodas, which are known as omavalli bajji. These pakodas can be enjoyed hot with ketchup or any other yogurt dip. Also try this recipe of ajwain chakli.

3. To Make Chutneys And Dips:

Ajwain leaves can be sautéed ground and then added to some creamy yogurt to make a delicious and flavourful dip. Alternatively, make some fresh ajwain leaves chutney by throwing it in the grinder with some water and spices of your choice. The chutney can be enjoyed with pakodas, chips, crisps or even with parathas.

4. To Make Refreshing Green Juices:

You can add ajwain leaves to any fruit or vegetable juice of your choice to add flavour and nutrition to the drinks. You can add them to any green juice of your choice to make it more palatable and flavourful.

Ajwain leaves are said to have a number of health benefits, including remedying stomach problems and for improving appetite and digestion. Bring these amazing leaves into your daily use to enhance taste and flavour of everyday dishes and for everyday home remedies.

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