A baseball-sized fruit with very hard skin and sticky, aromatic marmalade like pulp. Bael fruits are eaten in many parts of the world. Consumed more for their medicinal properties than taste.
Bael fruit is round and roughly the size of a baseball. The fruit starts out gray-green and turns a pale yellow when it matures. When split open, the fruit will reveal pale orange pulp separated by thick, dark orange walls. The fruit is also studded with resinous hairy seeds, enclosed in an envelope of mucilage.
Selecting and Buying
Preparation and Use
The bael fruit can eaten raw or cooked, and is often utilized in an unripe stage. When unripe, the fruit can be used to treat diarrhea, while the ripened fruit is a laxative. When used unripe, the fruit should be boiled and pulped. Some practitioners use the young shoots as well, for the treatment of ulcer and respiratory complaints.
When ripe, the pulp of the bael fruit can be scooped out and eaten plain, or dressed with milk and sugar to make a creamy drink. Bael fruit can also be used to make jams and jellies, which are used by those recovering from intestinal complaints. In general, the fruit is not eaten as much for its flavor as for its medical and purgative properties.
Conserving and Storing
Store wrapped in the refrigerator. When placing fruit in the refrigerator it is best to place the fruit in perforated bags and in the crisper drawer. Most fruit is best kept at a relative humidity of 90 percent.