Ber- The Winter Special Fruit
Image Credit: Ber or Indian Jujube

While growing up I was always told that don’t have ber; the Indian jujube before Saraswati puja.. I had no clue why but and also I would find all reasons to steal and have it. Also the fact remains that amongst all the fruits that are offered to Sararswati, ber is a must. This Jujube that is supposed to be powerhouse of essential vitamins and antioxidants.

This excellent fruit that’s rich for boosting immunity and also happens to be helpful for your gut health. Ber also finds it’s mention in Indian mythology and even Vishnu is associated with the fruit. Also known as Badrinath, he is the lord of the jujube tree, also called as badri or badara in Sanskrit. Even the mention of Sabri ke ber from Ramayan talks about Lord Ram relishing the ber. 

It’s always advisable to eat these hyper-local fruits immunity booster fruits. To your surprise this bite size fruit comes with much unexpected health benefits. 

This much neglected yet cute little fruit is extensively used to make pickles, chutneys, digestive churan and more. At times it’s even simply tossed as a chatpata delight. This fruit that is a Bengali household favourite is eaten as makha (mashed), chutney and even just a fruit as you walk around the house. It also makes it’s presence in the gota sheddho, a dish of all veggies boiled the only clause been they have to be whole and not chopped. Eaten on the next day of Vasant Panchami (Saraswati pujo) which happens to be called as Sheetal Shashti. Mind you this dish is prepared a day in advance and then eaten the next day, that too without been heated up. 

Few of the health are

    Helps You Sleep Better

    Regulates Blood Pressure

    Improves Bone Strength

    Rich In Vitamin C

    Gives a glowing skin

Whatever said and done having this fruit as it is with some black salt is utter delight. Try it to believe it. 

Typical Bengali recipe of Kuler chutney recipe


    Topa kul/Jujube fruit – 100 gm (discard its stem)

    Tomatoes- 200 gms

    Turmeric powder – ¼ tsp

    Salt – ¼ tsp

    Dry red chilli – 2 pieces

    Oil – 1 tsp

    Panch Phoron– ½ tsp

    Sugar – 100 gm ( you can also use jaggery)

Procedure for preparing Topa-Kuler Chutney

    Heat oil in a pan.

    Then add the dry red chilli and the panch phoron. Stir for few minutes. 

    Add the tomatoes. Cook till turns soft

    Then add the turmeric powder and the salt

    Once the tomatoes are half cooked then add the kul (ber)

    Make sure they are hand pressed

    Stir for sometime and add ½ cup of water.

    Then add the sugar/ jaggery according to taste

    Cook till it turns think or the desired consistency. 

    Take it from the flame and serve once cold.