Wood apple or bael is a commonly available fruit in our country. It is a yellow-colored, tasty, seasonal fruit. During summer, wood apple is abundantly available for 2 months. A full-grown matured wood apple tree is big in size, producing a lot of fruits. Most of the ripe fruits are fall into the ground and broken, which are eventually attracts insects like fruit flies, and spoiled within 1 or 2 days. These ripe bael fruits are best for consumption and preservation.
Wood apple or bael is an underutilized fruit, having many health benefits. It is a natural source of anti-oxidants. It is good for any of the following diseases-
- Liver disease
- Fatty Liver
- Cardiac problems
- Abdominal pain
- Stomach upset
- Chronic constipation
Ripe wood apple can be used to prepare fresh fruit juice (Bel er Panna) or can be preserved by making bael jelly. The method of preparation is very easy. The added sugar is actually used as a preservative. A little salt and spices used for making jelly also help to the shelf life of the preserved fruit. (1, 2)
Ladies and guys lets go the detail that how wood apple jelly can be prepared. Let’s know first, the list of ingredients and then the detailed method of preparation.
For preparing 500g of Wood Apple jelly –
- Wood apple or Beal: 6 medium size
- Sugar: 200g
- Black salt: 5g
- Black pepper: 5g (optional)
- Elaichi powder: a pinch (optional)
- Water: Half liter
- Take 6 medium sizes, fully ripe wood apples, wash them under running tap water to remove the extraneous dirt.
- Break the hard covering of wood apple using a hammer, remove the ripe, yellow-colored pulp containing numerous seeds, scrap all the pulp with the help of a teaspoon or knife. Check if there are any signs of spoilage, please discard the fruit completely because the bad smell of that fruit never is turned into the good aroma.
- Add half a litre of water to the pulp of the wood apple, mix well, strain the semi-solid pulp using a strainer. Collect all the pulp.
- Heat dry, non-stick Tawa, add all the pulp and salt (5g), heat the pulp at slow-flame for half an air. When the pulp becomes thick, add the required amount of sugar. You may add 1 spoon of black salt and/or elaichi powder.
- Cook for another 2 minutes and switch off the burner.
- Now your wood apple beverage (bel panna) is ready.
- Keep the freshly prepared wood apple jelly, cool it to room temperature.
- Now take a clean and dry, air-tight, glass bottle, fill it with jelly, keeping 1 inch of neck space, tightly cover the bottle.
The jelly filled bottle should be kept at refrigerator (at 4 degree Celsius).
Precautions to be taken to prevent Spoilage
- For preserving the wood apple jelly, glass jar is better than the plastic containers.
- The container should be air-tight.
- Whenever you like to take some jelly, please use a dry and clean spoon, don’t use any wet spoon.
- Don’t store the jelly outside the refrigerator, it increases the risk of spoilage.