Jamun, the fruit has been one of the favorites during our childhood in Belgaum. We knew it as Jambul then, and we would wait eagerly for the cart vendors to arrive with the ripened jambul. These were usually garnished with a bit of salt in order to enhance the taste. And, the fact that it coloured the tongue purple is what made it very popular with us kids. I guess these were available locally and hence we were able to get nicely ripened ones and they were inexpensive too.

Jambul. Pic from here http://www.vivekamexports.com/agriculture/fruits/jamun

I have this memory of a particular Jambul tree in the area we lived. We used to go there and look at the fruits and wait for them to ripen. Of course, there was no way we little kids could get hold of those except for those that would fall from the tree occasionally. One day after a downpour, we went there and found many of the ripened ones had fallen and we were delighted to collect those! Small joys of childhood !! 🙂

Once we moved to Mysore, these fruits were hard to come by and we never got the same yummy tasting ripe fruits again. It seemed the fruits were procured from outside and hence were not the same as locally grown ones. Once we moved to Bangalore, these fruits became a rarity, not widely available and generally expensive. We feel excited when we see Jambul, but somehow, its never the same as it was during childhood. Sigh! I know I’m sounding like my granma but the fact remains 🙂

An internet search on Jamun, brought this up… shows that Jamun has quite a few health benefits too!

While on the topic of Jamun, I’m reminded of the Gulab jamun, which is a very popular dessert here. Not only that, its the most popular sweet dish in our household too. Everyone loves it, especially the ones made by me 🙂 The kids generally do not like store bought Gulab Jamun and they make special requests on their birthdays and during some festivals too!

I, of course prepare Jamun using ready to use mix and not the traditional method. But I’ve learnt how to make them real soft and to get the sweetness right. The consistency is what makes it a hit each time! With everyone at home and with friends at my workplace too 🙂

Interestingly,  Gulab Jamun is named after “Jamun” or “jaman”, the Hindi-Urdu word for Syzygium jambolanum, an Indian fruit with a similar size and shape… the one I’ve referred to earlier 🙂

Gulab Jamun. Pic from here https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gulab_jamun#/media/File:Gulaab_Jamun_(homemade!)_bright.jpg

Linking this to the letter J at ABC Wednesdays – 18th Round.

 

 

 

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