Welcome to Fruity Friday’s...This week it is the Monk Fruit.
It grows here in Northern Thailand as well as in Southern China…Because it doesn’t keep well once picked or look particularly appealing it is very very rarely found in the markets and is used to make sweeteners…Its name derives from the fact it was used by monks way back in the 13th century…it is also known by the name of Luo Han Guo or “Buddha fruit…
The fruit extract is obtained by boiling the fresh fruit in hot water then drying afterwards this creates a powdered extract…
Monk Fruit sweetener or extract has been around for decades however now it is more readily available as it is becoming very popular among the diet conscious, vegans and anyone following the Keto Diet…In fact, I came across it as a sweetener when looking for a recipe only just a few weeks ago…
This fruit has been used for centuries in traditional Chinese medicine, but the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) didn’t approve its use as a sweetener until 2010.
Although like any product until extensive testing over a period of years has been done then the long term effects on human health are not known…however, because tests so far on mice at far higher doses than humans would take it is deemed to be safe for human consumption.
During processing, mogrosides are separated from the fresh-pressed juice. Therefore, monk fruit sweetener does not contain fructose or glucose.
Because this extract is maybe 100–250 times sweeter than table sugar, many manufacturers mix monk fruit sweetener with other natural products, such as inulin or erythritol, to reduce the intensity of the sweetness.
Different from most nonnutritive sweeteners which can cause side effects like bloating, gas or even allergic reactions monk fruit has no known side effects.
Some earlier studies show that monk fruit has been used in Traditional Chinese Medicines for centuries to make hot drinks for the relief of sore throats and reduce phlegm…it is the fruits mogrocides which are said to have anti-inflammatory properties and help keep sugar levels stable…
Based on some studies conducted on animal diabetes models is why it is being hailed as a power food for diabetes…
Hard to find fresh monk fruit...I am still searching and have my daughter law on the case at her local markets it is difficult to find fresh monk fruit unless you are in the regions where it is grown, It can, however, be found dried in some Asian stores.
I don’t use sweeteners but some say it does not have the bitter after taste of other sweeteners which does seem to be causing the upsurge in its popularity…however because to grow, harvest and dry this fruit is not an easy task plus the added import costs means this product is rarer to find and more expensive than other sweeteners and often there are fewer options available on the shelves.
During my research, I have discovered that Amazon sells it as do other speciality and wholefood grocers…
About Carol Taylor:
Enjoying life in The Land Of Smiles I am having so much fun researching, finding new, authentic recipes both Thai and International to share with you. New recipes gleaned from those who I have met on my travels or are just passing through and stopped for a while. I hope you enjoy them.
I love shopping at the local markets, finding fresh, natural ingredients, new strange fruits and vegetable ones I have never seen or cooked with. I am generally the only European person and attract much attention and I love to try what I am offered and when I smile and say Aroy or Saab as it is here in the north I am met with much smiling.
Some of my recipes may not be in line with traditional ingredients and methods of cooking but are recipes I know and have become to love and maybe if you dare to try you will too. You will always get more than just a recipe from me as I love to research and find out what other properties the ingredients I use contain to improve our health and wellbeing.
Exciting for me hence the title of my blog, Retired No One Told Me! I am having a wonderful ride and don’t want to get off, so if you wish to follow me on my adventures, then welcome! I hope you enjoy the ride also and if it encourages you to take a step into the unknown or untried, you know you want to…….Then, I will be happy!
Thank you once again for reading this post I hope you all have a fabulous weekend and stay safe… these are troubling times and I know many of you are back on lockdown again I just wish everyone would observe the guidelines and then maybe this will all be over far quicker than if we don’t xx