Kharik / Chuaara (Dried Dates)

Introduction

The crunchy and yummy dried dates are extremely beneficial for our health. This is date kind of a fruit which is dried. The berry kind of a fruit originally belongs to the land around Iraq. This tree and its fruit has been in existence for over 50 million years now. It has been a staple food of Indus Valley and Middle East for many thousands of years. As on date, the production of dried dates is done in countries such as Egypt, Iran and Saudi Arabia on a very large scale. The other producers include UAE, India, Pakistan, Algeria, Sudan and Oman etc. In India, dried dates are grown in Rajasthan, Gujarat and few south Indian states. In India, it is known by a number of local names such as ‘Pericham Pinju’ in Tamil, ‘Endu Kharjuram’ in Telugu, ‘Sookno Khejur’ in Bengali, ‘Vana Kharjoora’ in Kannada, ‘Kharik’ in Marathi and ‘kharek’ in Gujarati.

Nutritional Value

Dried dates can be considered as a mine of essential dietary nutrients. The vitamins present in dried dates are A, C, E, K, B2, B6, Niacin and thiamin. Apart from that, these are a great source of essential minerals such as potassium, iron, calcium, copper, and magnesium.

Usage in Indian Kitchen

In Indian kitchen, dried dates are used to make yummy chutneys and pickles. These are used in making sweet dishes and cakes and cookies. Kharek ka Halwa is the most sought after delicacy. Dried dates are an important constituent in Paan Ice Cream, Ladoos and Gujarati Dal. Our mothers make Sonth ki Chutney with dried dates and other dried fruits.

Health Benefits of Kharik / Chuaara

  1. The antioxidants in dried dates are good for digestive system.
  2. Extremely beneficial for skin and hair.
  3. Good for cardiovascular system.
  4. Boosts the energy.
  5. Anti-ageing and provides nourishment to body.