The Bael is the fruit of the Bael tree which in kannada is called belada hannu. This fruit is also known as wood apple, stone apple and golden apple. This Bael is grown mainly in India and few other countries of South Asia. The fruit Bael is mildly tangy and mostly sweet to taste.
To make the Panaka or Juice you need to take the pulp of the bael fruit by breaking its outer hard shell. You will need a hammer to do this. Add the other mentioned ingredients to this pulp to get a sweet juice. This Bael juice or the Baelada Panaka is liberally distributed to public during Ramanavami Festival in Southern India.
- Belada Fruit or Wood Apple or Elephant Apple or Bel Fruit – 1
- Jaggery – 2 Tbsp
- Water – 2 glass
- Pepper powder – 1 pinch
- Cardamom powder – 1/4 tsp
- Lemon Juice – 1 tsp (Optional)
How to Prepare:
Break the hard outer covering of Belada fruit or Wood Apple and remove inner pulp. The pulp provides a unique sour and sweet taste.
Take a vessel with water in it. Add Belada fruit pulp and squeeze the pulp in water. Then add Jaggery and hand mix well until the Jaggery dissolves completely.
Take a filter and filter out the seeds of the fruit from the juice.
Now add Pepper powder and Cardamom powder. If necessary, add Lemon Juice and stir well.
The Belada Hannu Panaka or Wood Apple Juice is now ready to be served.
If you prefer, keep it in refrigerator and serve chilled.
Wood Apple or Bel Fruit has many medicinal properties and hence this Juice/Panaka is considered very good for health.
In Southern India, Belada Panaka/Bel Fruit Juice and Masala Majjige are served on Rama Navami Hindu festival day, when people celebrate birth of Lord Rama.