Thursday, 28 November 2013

Amla in Honey Recipe Benefits - How to Preserve Amla (Indian Gooseberry) in Honey



Though we always get amlas/ Indian gooseberry year round, I have always preferred eating the smaller variety of gooseberries called" Sirunellikai" in Tamil. I used to love eating sirunellikai after dipping it in red chilli powder and salt mixture. When I was younger, most of my time were spent under the sirunellikai tree in my parents house. Though sirunellikai is also in rich in vitamin c, the bigger variety of gooseberries called "Amla" is clearly the winner, when it comes to health benefits. Last week, I was reading a medical journal in which a person had described his experience with anemia. Due to some illness, his red blood count had gone dangerously low. After struggling for some time to improve it, he was advised to take amlas that are soaked in honey, by an ayurvedic practitioner. He had reported that his anemic level raised remarkably after consuming them daily. Vitamin c in the amlas, help in iron absorption and honey is wonderful in raising the blood count. Though I don't like fresh amlas, I love this amlas soaked in honey. They taste wonderful and doesn't have any bitterness at all. Regular consumption of this amla in honey increases the blood count. It is especially important for Indian women, as almost 55% are anemic. We get honey soaked amlas in shops too, but they are very expensive. To make amla in honey at home, wash the amlas and pierce it all over a fork. Arrange the pricked gooseberries in a glass bottle and pour pure honey on top. Close with a lid and keep it in sunlight for few days, till the amlas leach out water completely. Now take the amlas alone in another dry bottle and pour fresh honey on top, now this amla in honey mixture will last a long time. There is also an another method- deseed the amlas, after cutting it in half, dry in sunlight till the water has completely dried out. Once the amlas come to room temperature, add the honey till it is full immersed and wait for the amlas to soften. Both methods need hot sunlight, choose the method you prefer and find convenient .





 METHOD:
1. These are the two common types of gooseberries found in India. We need the bigger variety of gooseberries popularly called "Amla".


2. Wash the fresh amlas and pat them dry completely using a kitchen cloth. Prick them all over with a tooth pick.


3. Arrange the cut and deseeded amlas tightly in a glass bottle.


4. Pour over honey, on top of the arranged amlas. The amlas should be fully immersed in honey.


5. Cover the bottle with a cheese cloth and keep under hot sunlight for 4 to 5 days. The water will leach out of amlas, once the water has completely leached out, remove only the amlas from the thinned down honey mixture and take it in a separate dry bottle. Now add fresh honey to it, till it is fully immersed. You can now store this in your pantry for a long time. Store the thinned down honey in the refrigerator for making the second batch.



NOTES:
  • Try to use only fresh amlas to make this.
  • The amlas should be completely leach out all the water, before removing it from the bottle to add honey.
  • Always keep the amlas under the sunlight till it fully leaches out the water during the first addition of honey, else it will start molding on top.
  • The thinned down honey can be reused again and again for making fresh batches.
  • Make sure to use dry spoon while using.
  • Pricking the amlas makes it easier to leach out water completely.
  • The second time you add honey, you don't need to keep it under sunlight, start consuming once the amlas have softened
  • They last a long time. Consuming one honey soaked amla everyday is very good way to improve our health.

42 comments:

  1. Yumm where to buy this or fruit in Oz?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi James,
      I am sorry, I don't know where you get amlas in oz.

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  2. i generally take arai nellikai.... which s my favorite. big goosberry, i will prepare pachadi and tasted Pickle, never had this..

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    Replies
    1. Ari nelli dhan amla

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  3. Dear Ramya,
    Loved this recipe...full of nutrition and goodness of both amla and honey.
    We live in a flat and don't have balcony here. So cannot access to sunlight for drying the "amla soaked in honey". So what else can I do to dry these "amlas soaked in honey"? Can I just keep them in the house only for drying them instead of keeping them outside in the sun? Will it remain for more months if I don't keep them outside in the sun for drying? Please reply. Thanks.

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  4. Dear Ramya,
    Do you have amla soaked in salt water recipe...a tangy and salty tasting amla recipe? I have tasted it when I was in school. My school mate who was growing amla in the village used to bring amla soaked in salt water. It was so tasty and tangy and mouth watering. Looking to see its exact recipe. I think they used to put ginger pieces also in the salt water where the amla are soaked...I guess so. Please share the recipe if you know about it.

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  5. If you don't have access to direct sunlight, keep the bottle in the windowsill. It will take longer to soak than the direct sunlight method, but it will not spoil sooner. I have a recipe for amlas soaked in salt water, I will try posting it in the blog, fast......

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  6. Thank you so much for the reply, Ramya. Would like to be in touch with you in future as we both are like minded people. I also love trying and using home remedies for all the health problems. Would like to get your email id so that I can be in touch with you in future too. Thanks for the reply again. God bless.

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  7. I would like to see the Cheese Cloth that you are mentioning to cover the bottle before keeping it for sunlight. What type of cloth is that and how you are tying it on the bottle? Are you covering the cheese cloth around the bottle using rubber band? I am not sure how would I cover it with a cloth...please reply. Thanks.

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  8. Cheese is a thin pure white cotton cloth (any thin cotton cloth will work). Tie it around the mouth of the jar, secure it with a thread and sun dry. Thin cotton cloths prevent dust settling, but allows enough sunlight to dry the ingredients.....

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  9. I tried to preserve the goose berry in honey I think the honey it self became watery and there is fungus on the top of the goose berries.
    I had bought Dabur honey from the store ,I didn't sun dry it but the jar was a clean dry one. what went wrong

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  10. Hi Manoj,
    The amla should be fully immersed in honey, if the amlas pops out of honey, it will spoil soon. Next time, make sure it is fully immersed and try sun drying it....

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  11. Has anyone tried soaking dried amlas (available in ayurvedic medicine stores) in honey? Does it give the same effect as soaking fresh amla in honey and they sun-drying?

    The place where I live is too dusty to sun-dry with just a cotton wrap on the bottle. Suggest me some alternatives, in that case.

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  12. You can soak dried amlas in honey and it has the same benefits. Prick it all over with a fork and pour honey on top till fully immersed and let the amlas soften. It might longer to soften than fresh amlas.....

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  13. Does amla lose all its nutrients when soaked in salt water.?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, Amla does not lose any of it's nutrients when soaked in salt water....

      Delete
  14. Hi pls help me l'm from coimbatore and l tried this but the gooseberries are all shrunken can l boil it ,dry it for 1or2 days then soak in honey in case of boiling will it lose it's vitamins etc. Please suggest. Thanks

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, I have never tried the boiling method, but give it a try. Instead of boiling it directly in water, try steaming it in idli maker and then continue with the process, that way the amla won't lose any of its nutrients....

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  15. Hi ramya,
    Thanks for this wonderful blog. I tried this amla in honey, but the amlas got shrunken in two days itself and its not soft. How much time it needs to be in direct sun light? Pls guide me on what went wrong.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Uma, As water leaches out the amlas will shrink, as far as it is not molding nothing to worry about. Two to three hours daily in the sunlight will work well. Wait for at least 15 to 20 days for the amlas to soften up, keeping it under sunlight will speed up the process. But make sure the amlas are fully covered in honey, else they will mold.

      Delete
  16. Hello!

    Pls informe what the best for constipation and stomach problemms as gastrite.
    Best regards

    ReplyDelete
  17. hi Ramya,

    Very nice information. can we consume this during pregancy, if so from which month to we can start and end.

    sriswarna

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Sriswarna, You can have amla from the start to the end of your pregnancy, take one daily...

      Delete
  18. Eating one amala daily will give same health benefits

    ReplyDelete
  19. Hi Ramya Ji, I wana preserve the fresh amlas for long time to eat one daily. Could u pls give an idea on that. i don`t wana dry n honey mix things.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, the only way to preserve fresh amlas for longer is by refrigerating it. Other than that, try this amla murabba recipe, it really lasts longer and it tastes amazingly good too: http://www.wildturmeric.net/2015/07/amla-murabba-recipe-health-benefits-pregnancy-hair-skin.html

      Delete
  20. Hi Ramya

    I am trying out the amla in honey. I kept it in sunlight for a week or so. It has shrunk but it is not soft like in your pics. Can I remove it from the first bottle and transfer it into another bottle with honey or should I wait till it turns soft and continue keeping it in sunlight. Also can I use the first run down honey mixture again immediately for making another batch and can the run down honey mixture be eaten or should it be thrown away at the end. Another question how long can the amla honey be used if kept at room temp. Have you written amla in saltwater recipe?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Since it has shrunk, the water must have fully leached out of it, you can transfer to another bottle with honey. You can use the run down honey immediately to make another batch. The run down honey should be eventually thrown away because it won't taste good. The amlas in honey can last well for months together at room temperature. I have not written amla in salt still...:) Try and let me know how it turns out for you...

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  21. Hi Ramya,

    Have made two small batches till now. Both have turned out good. Have also made Amla with salt and lemon and the other one I talked about with sugar and spices. I make small batches and they keep on getting over :D They are so tasty. Nowadays I am a fan of anything made with amla. Should make a big batch now so that it will last for some time at least. How many times run down honey bottle can be used? Is it okay to pour in some fresh honey in that bottle and continue using it? Also another place I read about amla and jaggery as a tonic to increase immunity in kids and adults. If you know do write about it. The procedure was putting in amla covered with shredded jaggery in a porcelain bottle, packed properly and leaving it in a dark place for around 40-50 days and then removing it and straining out the juice. One teaspoon to be had to increase immunity. Am trying that out too in a small batch. If successful will try a bigger batch :D

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If the run down honey smells rancid do discard it and then use fresh honey for making the next batches, don't add fresh honey to the run down honey. Amla with jaggery sounds Delicious, should try it some time, do let me know how it turns out for you...

      Delete
  22. Hi
    I am Senthil.. Saw your post and prepared Amla with honey as described here.. Initially I did not keep the honey in sunlight. After 1 week only, I kept it in Sun light for 4 to 5 days, by the time of all them got sunk while it was flotating on top initially. Now I have discarded the thinned down honey. Have put those amlas in New Honey bottle with fresh oney added. When I consume it, the taste is different. How do we know if the Amla (nellikai in tamil) has Molded. How to identify it. Bcoz the taste is very different, I need to know as I am consuming it daily morning. Please guide me

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If the amlas are molded which happens when certain parts are exposed to air, there will be a white growth on top of the amlas (which can be easily identified). Usually most of the store bought amla in honey are actually boiled in sugar syrups with little bit of honey added at the end, so the amlas made this way will taste different from it. Unless there is no white growth on top and it does not taste bad, continue having it...

      Delete
  23. Hey,

    How long we have to keep this amla with honey in sunlight??? can i keep it from morning 10 to evening 4????? help me in this..

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Usually during hot summers 2 to 3 days under hot sunlight (10am to 3 pm) is enough for the amlas to leach out the water completely...

      Delete
  24. Can we reuse the honey used for soaking amla. I have heard it should be kept in steel bottle not the plastic one.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, you can. I always keep my honey in glass bottle...

      Delete
  25. Original honey is too expensive in UAE so need some solution for reusing it , i wont use the dabur,himalaya or any other supermarket honey as it wont seems to be original. I can consume the run down honey or throw away. I purchase original balqees honey from yemen 3000INR only 150Gm

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You can't consume the rundown honey as it will not taste good. But you can reuse it for the next batch of amla in honey...

      Delete
  26. Mam
    , tell which is best used company's honey in the market, if original honey is not available

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  27. Mam, which is the best used company's honey, if original honey is not available

    ReplyDelete
  28. Hi Ramya,
    I tried your receipe with little alteration in the procedure.Instead of keeping it full i just cut it into slices and follow your procedure.my query is incase if the water is not fully leached out and still we put it in a honey, will that get spoil or get fungus?

    ReplyDelete