Makhana: Everything You Need To Know About Fox Nuts
- Tavishi Dogra
Updated : April 10, 2022 08:04 IST
You must have eaten makhana as a snack, but do you know how is it made?
Makhana is considered an excellent option when it comes to snacks. But, do you know this tasty and healthy food can be consumed even during fasting? Be it roasted makhana or makhana kheer, everything made with it tastes fantastic. Everyone knows that makhana comes from a plant, but do you learn from which plant and where this plant grows? Let us tell you something about makhana today - how it is grown, made palatable and more.
- Harvesting makhana seeds: We know what makhana is made of, but it takes quite an effort to extract it. This process must be done carefully because farmers have to dive underwater to extract it. Makhana originates from a flower, a part of the lotus plant and can also be extracted from the water lily. It is the seed of the lotus flower which is processed to make this makhana. This beautiful flower is offered to goddess Lakshmi; hence makhana is considered pure. Makhana is grown chiefly in Bihar, India. However, it is also found in some parts of Korea, Japan and Russia.
- Collecting makhana seeds: Only a few experienced people are employed to harvest makhana. Extracting it from the pond starts around 10 in the morning and continues till 3 o’clock (taking 4-5 hours comfortably). It is extracted using bamboo in many places, and this process is done differently in different areas.
- Cleaning and storing lotus seeds: It isn’t easy to clean and store them. First, they are kept in a big pot and then stirred continuously. By doing this, the dirt on the top of the makhana is cleaned and then washed with water so that the dirt can be thoroughly cleaned. The cleaned seeds are then packed into small bags and a cylindrical container. This container is rolled on the ground for a long time so that the seeds become smooth. After this, these seeds are prepared for the next day.
- Drying the lotus seeds: These seeds are spread on mats and dried for 2-3 hours on the second day. Drying them is an essential task as it is necessary to remove the moisture from them for the next step.
- Separating lotus seeds: The dried seeds have to pass through about ten large iron sieves. In this process, seeds of different sizes are stored separately. Now they are ready for their final stage.
Storing makhana seeds
When the makhanas are dry, they are fried. Workers have to complete this process within a limited time; otherwise, they get spoiled easily. Once fried, they are stored in bamboo containers. The storage method is also quite different. Those containers are covered with a particular cloth, and cow dung is coated on the side of that container to maintain its temperature. They are fried again after a few hours, followed by the same process. Once the seed bursts, a white makhana emerges from it and is placed on wooden planks. In this way, a delicious makhana is prepared after hard work, and once the white puff comes out, it is also cleaned so that no part of the seed remains in it.
Now that you have learned many things related to makhana, why not include it in our diet. First, however, consult your doctor if you are allergic to it or makhana does not suit you.