“VERILY VERALU” – By Des Kelly
What an absolutely amazing World this is.
Immediately brings to mind, the old “Veralu-achcharu” woman, seated just outside the main gate of St.Peter’s College, Bambalapitiya, selling little parcels of her delicious achcharu to us schoolboys, both, at the morning tea interval and lunch interval, a snack that was always welcome, at about 20 cents a serve, if I remember it correctly. Each
achcharu pack contained about three veralus, less the large seed, of course, amalgamated in a spicy mix of other little berries, ginger & garlic, ground into a small, thick mixture that got the taste-buds going, like nothing else could.
If you are Sri Lankan, and have not tried Veralu-achcharu, you have missed out on a delicacy too good to be true.
Now, from the old, to the new,, comes this very interesting piece on the Veralu (out of the blue), nothing to do with Vera, it’s true, but it rhymes beautifully, too. Please read and enjoy something that is endemic to Sri Lanka.
Folks, this is “Verily-Veralu”.
Secrets of Veralu – By Ishara Jayawardane
Monday, November 25, 2019 – 01:00 – DAILY NEWS
The Veralu/Ceylon Olive is an astonishing doppelganger of its Mediterranean namesake, Institute of Indigenous Medicine, Department of Dravyaguna Vignana, Senior Lecturer, Dr. S. D. Hapuarachchi. Green Thumbs speaks to Hapuarachchi about the fruit.
Globally, more and more people are switching to personal care products that are alcohol and SLES free that is made with natural ingredients. Veralu is one such product that is completely natural.
“Veralu is an indigenous tree and commonly found in Sri Lanka. The plant is commonly grown in the dry zone of Sri Lanka. It is an Asian tropical fruit. The Ceylon olive trees are naturally grown in home gardens across the country. The tree usually measures from 8 to 15 meters in height and 5 to 10 meters in width. The plant is commonly grown in the dry zone of Sri Lanka. This sun loving tree grows on Loam soil and requires low maintenance,” said Hapuarachchi.
Hapuarachchi also pointed out that you can use the Veralu as a vegetable as well as a fruit. You can use it to make Veralu achcharu, veralu malu, veralu sambol. Veralu juice too is in high demand. It is prepared by slicing the Veralu into pieces, mix it with water and blend it to get the juice. Then all you need to do is to add sugar and salt. Nuts, pea nuts can be eaten alongside Veralu juice. You can add Veralu to smoothies, ice cream and jelly. Ice cream made out of Veralu is also increasing in popularity particularly among the local youth. The Whole fruits are combined with diced shallots to make a mixture called country mustard.
“It is packed with antioxidants and research has revealed that the Veralu fruit is rich in minerals, vitamins, fiber and valuable antioxidants. Due to its nutritional content, Veralu has been used in traditional Sri Lankan medicine for centuries,” said Hapuarachchi.
For a fruit so little it is one of the giants when it comes to health benefits. The Ceylon olives possess anti-inflammatory, antibiotic, anti-anxiety, analgesic, antidepressant and antihypertensive properties. Elaeocarpus serratus/ Veralu is used in rheumatism and is an antidote for poison.
“The bark of the Ceylon olive tree is used to treat hemorrhages and gastric disorders. The paste of the leaves has been known to be a cure for ulcers. The fruits are used in the treatment of dysentery and diarrhea. It is also used to treat abscess, fungal infection, joint swelling and Eczema,” said Hapuarachchi.
One reason why Veralu is so marketable is because it solves a lot of lifestyle issues like looking good and looking dapper. With the very appearance conscious youth, the fruit is high in demand.
Hapuarachchi added that the Veralu is highly useful for someone in the public eye as they need to be well groomed. A natural form of hair care Sri Lankans have been using the fruit as a natural form of hair care for generations. The mashed Veralu leaves are applied on the hair before a bath to make hair smooth and glossy. It protects the natural moisture of the hair while making it bright and silky. Ceylon olives are a natural anti-dandruff agent and protect hair from lice and dirt. It helps to maintain healthy hair while repairing damaged hair. Many personal care manufactures are currently using extracts of Veralu to formulate anti-dandruff shampoos.
“As I stated above Veralu is for your pride and confidence as well. Numerous personal care and food companies have begun to promote value added products made out of Veralu.
Sri Lanka can benefit from this increasing global trend by supplying high quality personal care products that are made from herbal ingredients such as Veralu.
In addition to providing health benefits Veralu is a fruit/vegetable that can bring economic and financial benefits. When you take the international market there is potential for Sri Lankans when it comes to exporting Veralu. Sri Lankans are not the only ones who want to look good!!!
Currently, Sri Lankan Ayurveda herbal shampoo and conditioners made out of Veralu are sold in the local and international markets.
However, the long term health benefits of such products need to be communicated to the local and international consumers.
* It is packed with antioxidants.
* The Veralu fruit is rich in minerals, vitamins, fiber and valuable antioxidants.
* The Ceylon olives possess anti-inflammatory, antibiotic, anti-anxiety, analgesic, antidepressant and antihypertensive properties. Elaeocarpus serratus/ Veralu is used in rheumatism and is an antidote for poison.
* The fruits are used in the treatment of dysentery and diarrhea. It is also used to treat abscess, fungal infection, joint swelling and Eczema,”
The Veralu leaf extracts can be utilized to produce effective ointments to treat ulcers, Eczema and fungal infections of the skin. More research can also be conducted on the manufacture of anti-bacterial and anti-depressant medicines using Veralu as a key ingredient. The constipating effect of the fruit can be made to use by manufacturing capsules that are effective against diarrhoea.
Possess anti-inflammatory, antibiotic, anti-anxiety, analgesic, antidepressant and antihypertensive properties
The bark of the Ceylon olive tree is used to treat hemorrhages and gastric disorders.