You will be wondering why in the world I am making Winter Melon Juice; because we got a bounty, a huge winter melon/Ash gourd that grew up in our garden. We gave a small piece to coworker (who is from China) of my hubby, and he told us he made winter melon soup with it. With rest of winter melon/ Ash gourd I made curries, juice and a sweet.
However I need to perfect the recipe of that sweet, it is not reached the standard I expected. So I need improve the recipe I will do that. While growing up amma always made curries with winter melon/ash gourd. We make sambar, olan, kootu curry, moru curry etc. I make dishes using winter melon at the rate of on every day for the whole of the last week.
I had got the seed from a piece of winter melon which I had bought from the store sometime ago, hubby asked me to plant it in the garden, and to see if it grows. I put 2-3 seeds, it starts growing and crowding the sides of vegetable bed. I told him cut that one I don’t think it is not giving any fruit. He starts cutting on one side and saw a small fruit; he told me yes there is fruit. We let it grow for few weeks; we finally got a 20 pound winter melon.
Today my enthusiastic mind decided to try winter melon/ ash gourd juice. I read that in eastern Asia, they make winter melon tea/punch. The winter melon tea/punch is brown in color and is made from the caramelized winter melon, and only the concentrate is used to make the tea.
I am also amazed to see that there is also candied winter melon in Chinese and Vietnamese cuisine, and maybe I will get to try that one too.
Coming to winter melon/ ash gourd juice, winter melon itself has a mild taste; it requires some flavoring to brings out the flavor. Winter melon/ Ash gourd is really healthy vegetable, as it has 90 % of water , and is known to have natural diuretic effect on the body as potassium rich food, as a result it flushes out sugars and bodily wastes through your urinary tract. When dealing with water retention potassium serves to eliminate salt content in blood and helping to restore stability to your body.
It is rich in Dietary Fiber and Vitamin C as a result it helps to relieve constipation and helps to have better Skin. Winter melon/ Ash gourd is rich in Saponin which has the power to block fat as well as slow down spikes in sugar level. These benefits have been said to be helpful in the prevention of obesity and recovery from obesity. It is also low in calories at about 16 calories per 100g serving size. Read more from here .
In ayurveda, traditional Indian medicine, winter melon/ash gourd’s health benefits are mentioned in Charaka Samhita and Ashtanga Hridaya Samhita which is oldest writing about Ayurveda. It is considered to improving the activities of brain. It balance vata (brain, nervous system, joints, colon and large intestinal tract) and pitta (metabolism, digestion, liver, gall bladder and small intestine) read more from here
After reading this I thought I should try winter melon juice, and first removed the waxy green skin and chopped into cubes and blend it in blender with 1 cup of water. Then after straining, added the juice of one lemon, little salt and pepper, and we both husband and wife enjoyed the drink. Kids ran away from it. Yes it is crazy juice for them as it has no sugar in it.
If you are little adventurous, try this juice, healthy. Don’t dump any sugar then it will lose its healthy juice tab. Here comes the recipe.
Serves: 2 serving
- 4 cups of winter melon/ Ash gourd/ kumbalanga/ petha
- 1 lemon
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- 1 cup water
- In blender or juicer or food processor add peeled chopped winter melon pieces and 1 cup of water.
- Blend until you get a smooth consistency
- Strain the juice to remove big pieces, then add lemon juice, salt and pepper and mix everything well.
Linking this to favorite recipes: Beverages hosted by Prachi’s Veg Kitchen