Banana Flower or Plantain Flower is also known as Banana Blossom. In Tamil we call it as ‘Vazhai Poo’. We prepare Poriyal, Kootu, Vadai, Usili etc with vazhai poo. Banana tree is a wonderful creation of nature and we use all parts of the tree like ripe banana, raw banana, banana tree leaves, banana stem and banana flower.
Banana flower is very tasty if cleaned and cooked properly. This consists of red colour bracts or petal like things and beneath that, you can see a bunch of florets. We use the florets for cooking. As preparing banana flower is a little messy job, it is cooked occasionally. If you learn to clean, you can cook frequently. Banana flower is believed to be good for stomach, mouth ulcers and for menstrual disorders.
- Apply some oil in your both hands to avoid stains caused by juice or water coming from the flower while peeling.
- Remove the bracts and collect the florets.
- Each floret will be having, one string like thing with small head, with the floret. Remove that as it is not used for cooking. There will be plastic chip like thing, remove that also as it is not used for cooking.
- After removing waste, cut florets into fine pieces. After removing 10 to 12 bracts, the florets will be small, that time to remove the waste, takes bunch of florets in your right hand rub on left hand palm gently and remove waste. As you keep peeling the petals or bracts, the colour also gets lighter and lastly white. Now this will look like a sharp edged bulb. Cut this into small pieces and add with other cut florets.
- Put all finely chopped florets in water with little butter milk (diluted form of curd) and salt. This helps to avoid discoloration of the vegetable. Mix well and wash this 2 to 3 times, drain and keep. Now Vazhai Poo (Banana Blossom) is ready for cooking.