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The Significance of Coconut in South Indian and South Indian Cuisine

The coconut tree is a member of the palm tree family that carries a palm consisting of a seed and a fruit called the coconut. Coconut is also known as the tree of life as it is one of most useful trees in the world. It provides food, fuel, cosmetics, folk medicine and building materials, just a few of the many uses of coconut.


In some Asian cultures including Hinduism in Indian, coconut also has a religious significance too. It forms the basis of wedding and worship rituals in Hinduism. In India the beginning of anything new is marked by breaking a coconut, thus embarking a new and secure journey forward.


In India this palm is found majorly in the Southern states and holds utmost importance and a high place in the cuisines of these states. Traditionally coconut is cultivated in the Southern states of Kerala, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, and Andhra Pradesh. States like Maharashtra, Odisha, West Bengal, Assam, Gujarat and Goa are also into production of coconut.


In India, mostly South India, the entire coconut palm including the flesh, shell and fruit is consumed and made full use of. So much so that Kerala is called the “land of coconuts''. This versatile palm is consumed all over India and carries a very distinctive flavour and aroma. Try delicious, fresh traditional Indian coconut chutney at one of the best Indian restaurants in Berlin, Dosa and More.


Dosa and More is an authentic Indian restaurant in Berlin that serves traditional Indian street food and South Indian dishes at very reasonable prices. All ingredients used at Dosa and More are organic and fresh. When in Berlin do visit Dosa and More for a delicious, traditional Indian meal.


Each part of the coconut has its own benefits and not just one, multiple purposes. Coconut is used in Beauty products, health products, various mouth-watering dishes and much more. Here are a few uses of the coconut palm:


1. It is used as a natural conditioner

2. The best suited hair oil for South Indian weather

3. Contains moisture properties

4. Used in the making of organic hair products and skin care products

5. It is used to massage the bodies of new born kids

6. Acts as a moisture

7. Carries antiseptic and antibacterial properties

8. Helps you bid farewell to chapped lips

9. Water of coconut is a healthy natural sugar product

10. The coconut water has anti-dehydration properties

11. Increases energy

12. Carries important minerals like calcium, potassium and magnesium

13. It is great for bone, muscle and heart health

14. Provides with 5 types of products- Coconut water, coconut milk, oil, sugar and flesh

15. Used in the South Indian cuisine

16. In Goa, coconut is majorly used in curries both vegetarian and non-vegetarian

17. Coconut sweets have a very unique texture and flavour

18. The flowers of coconut are fermented to form coconut palm wine

19. Coconut shell is surrounded with husk which is used in the manufacturing of brushes, brooms, mattresses, etc

20. Coconut shell is used to create beautiful home decor pieces


Here is a delicious recipe for coconut chutney which you can also try with a South Indian meal available at Dosa and More, a pure vegetarian South Indian restaurant in Berlin.


Prep time: 12 minutes

Cook time: 3 minutes

Total Time: 15 minutes


Grind:

  • ½ cup fresh grated coconut

  • 2 tablespoon roasted chana dal

  • 1 or 2 green chillies

  • ½ inch ginger

  • Salt

  • 3-4 tablespoon wate

Tempering:

  • ½ teaspoon mustard seeds

  • ½ teaspoon urad dal

  • ½ teaspoon cumin seeds

  • 9-10 curry leaves

  • 1 pinch asafoetida or hing

  • 1 dry red chilli

  • ½ tablespoon oil


Instructions:

1. Take freshly grated coconut in a chutney grinder or small jar

2. Add ginger and green chilli

3. Add roasted chana, salt and water

4. Grind to make smooth paste, add more water if needed

5. Remove the paste in a bowl

6. Heat oil in small pan and add mustard seeds

7. Once ready add curry leaves, hing and chilli

8. Fry for a couple of minutes and turn of heat

9. Immediately pour the oiled herbs into the paste

10. Mix well


Coconut chutney is best served with South Indian dishes like Idli Sambar, Dosa, Upma, etc.


Health benefits of eating raw coconut fruit are as follows:


1. It won't let constipation ruin your life

2. Eases digestion

3. Fat content of raw coconut nourishes skin

4. Helps lose weight

5. Increases immunity

6. Rich in nutrients

7. Rich in Iron and copper

8. Serves as a healthy snack

9. Rich in antioxidants

10. Coconut flour is a great healthy replacement to All purpose flour


Coconut chutney is refreshing, filling, delicious and healthy traditional to South India and available in Berlin, Germany at Dosa and More. A warm bowl of Sambar and coconut chutney with delicacies like Dosa, Idli, Upma, Rawa or any other make the perfect meal for anytime of the day. Need healthy cooking oil, moisture for skin or hair, healthy snacks, eco-friendly furniture or cutlery, a beautiful textured garnishing, coconut has it all.