The traditional cuisine of Assam is strongly influenced by the local ingredients. Dhekiya Xaak, Outenga, Baah Gaanj, Kaji Nemu, Bhoot Jolokiya are some of these ingredients. Outenga or Elephant Apple (botanical name: Dillenia indica) is a tangy fruit used in lentils or curries (esp. fish curries). This round shaped hard skinned fruit has a hard pulp within. The Outenga has a very subtle flavor. Lentils and curries cooked with Outenga are soul satisfying during summer.
Outenga plays a vital role in an Assamese kitchen.
Outenga can also be used to prepare a natural summer cooling drink. This “Outengar Sharbat” summer drink is very refreshing and flavorful. To prepare the drink, you require ripe Outenga fruits. You can preserve the drink in refrigerator.
Ingredients to prepare Outengar Sharbat:-
1.5 litres of Water
6 tbsp sugar
1 tsp salt
1 tbsp lemon juice
How to prepare Outengar Sharbat:-
Wash and wipe and dissect the Outenga into two halves.
Remove the seeds first then separate the layers.
Cut the layers of the Outenga into pieces.
Take 1.5 litres of water in a pressure cooker and add the Outenga pieces into it.
Pressure cook for 5 whistles.
Let it cool down by itself.
Take out the water along with the cooked outenga pieces in a large glass bowl.
Crush the pieces so as to extract the sour juice and let the pulp flow with the water.
Add 6 tbsp sugar into the water and mix well.
Add 1 tsp salt into the water and mix well.
Add 1 tbsp of lemon juice and mix well.
Let it rest for overnight.
Take out the squeezed parts of the Outenga pieces.
Transfer the juice along with pulps into a bottle and refrigerate it for 5/6 hours before serving.
Pour in glasses and serve chilled Outengar Sharbat.