Monday, September 2, 2013

Have You Tasted This?

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 I had been to Usman road, a famous shopping area in Chennai, two days back.  I had seen this cartwallah, selling this coconut flower (we call it thenga poo in Tamil) for a long time, whenever I went shopping here.  .  Though we have tasted smaller versions of this fruit (I feel like calling it fruit), along with the coconut at home often, I had never bought one from this cart.  This time I bought one fruit by paying Rs.30/- . No trace of coconut is there inside the shell.  The shell came out clean like it  comes out from dry coconut...copra.  




The weather was very hot and so I asked him why all the coconuts were wet.  He said that he keeps on sprinkling water on them so that they don't dry up.  You can see some coconut saplings on the side.

I noticed a small sprout projecting near the top of the coconut where the '3 eyes' could be seen.  This fruit which is inside the coconut provides nutrition for the sprout to grow into a sapling, he said.  People grow some coconut trees just for this purpose, he said.  He sells off all these coconut fruits within 2 days, it seems! Mostly, North Indian people are fond of this, it seems.  This is full of nutrition and helps to cure mouth ulcers.  I remember my grandmother telling me that we should not eat more of this fruit since it aggravates 'piththa'...what do you call it in English...bile, which is produced by liver?  It is not very sweet.  Looks and tastes spongy-like.   


The whole fruit


Cross section

Coconut flower (Pic. courtesy: Wiki) We call it Tennampoo in Tamil.


Have you tasted this fruit?


Edited to add today (3.9.13): I have tasted this many times and if I remember correctly this was tastier, sweeter than the one which is shown  above! I think this fruit grows eating the surrounding coconut and its water for feeding the sprout! Researching...!


Thanks for this picture, google!

Edited to add on 4th Sept.'13: My friend Sai Charan has mentioned this LINK about this fruit in the comment section.  Have a look!
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24 comments :

SG said...

No. I have not tasted it yet. Do you recommend or you don't recommend?

Destination Infinity said...

I have eaten the flower that comes inside normal coconuts, but not this one. Not sure if I want to eat it!

Destination Infinity

kanagu said...

I have eaten this and I like it :) as kid i used to fight when it comes with normal coconut.. but nowadays i buy from these roadside shops.. but not often.. 30 rs is too pricey :(

Sandhya said...

SG: It is nutritious. I tried once and I don't think I will buy again, though the taste is not bad!


DESTINATION INFINITY: This is the first time I bought this too!


KANAGU: The small ones are tastier than these, I think! My children used to fight for the small ones when I broke open the coconuts at home!


L KRUPAA said...

I have never seen , though hv seen the flower in a coconut but not the whole thing like this, is it native to TN?

Ercotravels said...

Wow, what the wonderful fruit! looking nice.

sharu said...

I have tasted the small one and i like the taste also. But i am not very sure about the one with the cartwallahs. I always think that it is not good. Moteover they leave it open also. If i m right the smaller flower will be more tastier... nice photos maami.

Ashwini Sriram said...

Great post and great photos maami! I have never seen this cartwallah anywhere. I looovvve thengapoo and sometimes even pray that I should be able to find and eat one soon, since they are so rare in normal coconuts.

I will definitely try one at Usman road!

ashok said...

yes..had tasted it in my younger days..not liked it much though...

Bhagyashree said...

I have had it and I like it a lot but pay for it, nah.
Sometimes we get this in the coconut, then it is fine but will never pay for it :P

Sai Charan said...

Yes Sandhyaji! I've tasted it more than a couple of times, my family address it as a flower, but it makes sense to call it a fruit!

If you buy a normal coconut sold at temples and when you offer it to God, if you notice this flower/fruit inside, it is considered very auspicious. Not sure why, but it is a sign of good luck, prosperity and that your wishes/desires will come true!! :)

I came across a link when I checked about the reason why it is auspicious, check it and read the 4th bullet point --> http://monisacademy.com/?p=582

Thanks for sharing this interesting topic, have a nice day,

Cheers,
Sai :)

sm said...

havent tasted it yet
pics are nice

Renu said...

never tasted it, but looks like some type of mushroom?

Jeevan said...

I thought so far coconut flowers rarely present inside a coconut, which we don’t know until break away. This is really amazing and I never seen such a big flower - in shape of thirupathi ladu. I also never know this fruit help grow the sapling.

I haven’t tasted it yet!

Ramakrishnan Ramanathan said...

Wow what a delightful and informative post. I vaguely remember seeing thenga poo but cannot remember when - must have been a long time ago.The poo is extremely soft.

BK Chowla, said...

Surprising..never heard of this before?
Is it only in TN or is available in other parts of South India?

Sandhya said...

L.KRUPAA: I think it is native to South India.


SHARU: They have left it open to sell...to show how it is inside, like they do with Papaya or Pomegranate. They break the coconut in front of us and give us in a carry bag. Yes, the smaller fruits which comes with our regular coconut is tastier than this. I think.


ASHWINI SRIRAM: The cart is always in the street corner before BKR hotel, opp. to old GRT!


ASHOK: The taste is not that great, but is a rare fruit!


BHAGYASHREE; This is the first time I bought it. I have tasted the fruit which came with the normal coconut!


SAI CHARAN: Auspicious? Read the link you shared. It is interesting!

Thank you, Sai!


SM: Thank you, SM!


RENU: No, this is Coconut, Renu!


JEEVAN; Though I had been seeing this cart for many years, I never tried to but the coconut fruit and eat! I bought it this time out of curiosity! The taste is just OK!


RAMAKRISHNAN RAMANATHAN: The poo/fruit is spongy!


B.K.CHOWLA: It is available all over South India as far as I know, Chowlaji!

contemplatingme said...

Not a fan of that flower. I like coconut only in chutni form. Other innovations don't go well with my taste palate. :P

Usha Pisharody said...

I have! And I rather like it! :)

Gouri Guha said...

Reading this post brought back memories of this coconut which I had eaten as a child...many years back...never saw this again. Good sharing.

Sandhya said...

CONTEMPLATING ME: Welcome to my space CM!

I remember liking the small flowers but this one is just OK!

Thank you!


USHA PISHARODY: Do you? Do you get them in the market like we get here?


GAURI GUHA: Welcome Gauri!

I have seen this cart selling this coconut for many years now. The seller said that he sells one cart of coconut within two days!

Thank you!

Unknown said...

Do you know where I can get in London?

pawan verma said...

Dear Forum Member,
I need this coconut flower.I am living in delhi.Please share the contact to get it.

Sandhya said...

PAWAN VERMA: Welcome, Pawan Verma! I got this from the market area in T.Nagar, Chennai. Market areas in Delhi might have them. I was told Marwaaris like this fruit a lot. They buy, sometimes all of them, at a time, it seems. Try your luck!

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