Jute Leaves or Lalo and its benefits
Do you know Jute leaves or Lalo? I discovered that Lalo also called Jute is cultivated in many countries and the Caribbean Islands, and I wanted to share my findings. I was not sure of its name in English and other languages, so I decided to search the World Wide Web.
The information found was very informative and worth sharing. Jute Leaves are also called Lalo, Saluyot, Egyptian Spinach (Molokheya), Bush Okra, or ewedu West African Sorrel depending on the region of the world. Jute plants are widely found in tropical and subtropical areas from Asia to Africa where they are mostly used in cooking. The leaves are used in stews, soups, tisanes or teas.
Some jute plants produce very bitter leaves and are not considered edible. Common to Asian and African cooking, jute leaves are used to flavor soups, stews, teas, and vegetable dishes. They are consumed for their flavor, their nutritional value as a source of beta-carotene, and in some regions for their use as an herbal remedy for various health concerns. The leaves are harvested from specific varieties of this plant for food while the stalks are used for industrial products such as rope, pulp, paper, fiber, and composites. (recipetips.com)Dried Lalo/Jute Leaves[/caption]
Also called differently in other parts of the world
In the US and many parts of the Caribbean, Jute is also called Okra, not the same as okra leaves. In Haiti, Jute leaves are called Lalo. Haitians cook Lalo with and without meat. In many households, Lalo is mostly cooked with beef or blue carbs (cirique). In Egypt, Egyptian Molokheya is a soup made with Jute leaves. Other parts of the world such as the Middle East, it is stir-fried with other ingredients or by itself with savory spices. In Nigeria, a favorite dish, Amala, and Eweduis a stew made with jute leaves. Whether it is served as a soup, stew or teas, it is said to have various health benefits.
Jute leaves are very nutritious, rich in calcium, iron, protein, vitamin A, C and E, thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, folate, and dietary fibers. Jute leaves are found in specialty stores fresh, frozen or dried form. It can also be found in local farmers’ markets depending on your location, and it may be called okra leaves. Not the same leaves from the okra plant.
Various forms of Jute Leaves images taken from the Internet[/caption]
Usage and other benefits
When jute leaves are cooked, they can get somewhat gluey and mucilaginous like okra, another common vegetable thickener. The consistency is almost similar to that of okra, and that is why it is a perfect dish to be eaten with rice or other starchy foods.
Cooking jute leaves can be a bit tricky because it forms a thick slimy syrup similar to the consistency of okra. When cooking jute leaves, it is important to cook it at the right temperature and the right amount of time because the leaves become very dense, gluey and slimy and can be not appetizing.
Other usages of Jute leaves are various health benefits because it has been determined to contain an ample amount of Vitamin A, thiamine, riboflavin, ascorbic acid, and is also rich in fiber. It is used as an anti-inflammatory treatment and a wrinkle reducer because it contains anti-oxidant substances. It is also believed to have curing agent to reduce chronic inflammation of the urinary bladder. The stem and stalk of the Jute plant are used to manufacture ropes and jute sacks. The leaves are also used as facemask as a beauty tip to rejuvenate the skin.
If you wish to use or consume Jute leaves, it is worth knowing it benefits. Remember to check CaribbeanGreenLiving.com for the Haitian Lalo recipe or Jute recipe.
Disclaimer: The information presented herein is intended for educational and informational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before consuming Jute Leaves fresh, dried or frozen or taking it in the form of supplement, it is always advisable to consult with your healthcare provider.
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