Monday, 13 February 2012




          Love apple fruits of the sort I use for making this superb wine are borne on small shrubby trees that grow easily in both warm and cooler climates in Kerala. The tree grows nicely both in the full sun as well as in partial sunlight in well drained, moist, humus rich soil and tolerate temperatures ranging from 12° C to 45° C.

          The fruit is called ‘Rose Jamba’ in Malayalam and is pleasantly sour and sweet in taste. It has great digestive powers and can be eaten as an excellent appetizer. It is rich in vitamins and can be drunk as fresh love apple juice or preserved as a syrup or squash. Love apples are great for making pickles or for use as a salad. You can also make teek umman with love apples alone in place of the other vegetables I have given in that recipe.

          The love apple tree can be easily propagated by seeds and starts yielding from the second or third year when watered and nourished with organic fertilizers. It bears fruit copiously 5 to 6 times a year. A ten year old tree can give you several baskets full of fruit in each picking.

          The fruits of other cultivars of love apples such as Panineer Jamba, White Jamba, Pista Jamba, Chocolate Jamba (Bangkok Jamba), Apple Jamba, Malayan Apple, etc. which grow into much bigger trees, can also be used to make love apple wine, albeit of lesser quality.

          It is the wine made from Rose Jamba (see picture) which takes the first place both in my experience as well as in the delighted opinions of a few of our wine-taster friends.

          So wine lovers, if you have a love apple tree at home, take good care of it and make use of the abundant fruits to make your own unique homemade wine and enjoy.


     1)    Freshly picked love apples with seeds removed – 3 Kg.

     2)    Sugar – 1½ Kg.
     3)    Water – 3 litres
     4)    Fresh yeast (used for leavening bread) – 25 gm.

To Make:

          Pick or buy four kilos of fresh love apples (Rose Jamba). Wash well to get rid of the dry stamens and pluck off the green stems if any. Split the fruit into two halves with a knife and discard the seeds (the seeds have a bitter taste). Weigh and set aside 3 kilos of the cleaned fruit.

          Use a food processor or a juicer to collect as much of the juice as possible from the fruit. Use a dry cotton or muslin cloth to bundle up the fibrous paste and squeeze out all the juice. Pour the juice into a 10 litre stainless steel vessel. Pour in the water and add the sugar. Set on high heat and stir till all the sugar is dissolved.

          Once it boils nicely, switch off the heat and cover with a lid. Let cool naturally. As soon as it reaches body temperature, tip in the yeast. Cover with the lid again and let cool fully. Use a clean, sundried, large, airtight (8 to 10 litres) glass jar or a food grade transparent plastic jar to keep the leavened syrup in a cool dark place for 45 days.

          At the end of that period, all the sediments would have settled down at the base of the jar, leaving the crystal clear love apple wine above. Pour the clear wine carefully into another clean, dry vessel without disturbing the sediments. Transfer to airtight bottles and refrigerate. The more it ages in the fridge, the stronger it becomes.

          The wine given in the picture is a superb 6 month old drink. New wine is light rose in colour. It turns a transparent glowing gold as it ages.


Important Note:

          Keep out of reach of children as love apple wine is quite intoxicating. If you are not in a position to keep the wine securely away from children, please do not make this wine at all. Instead, do make some delicious love apple syrup and enjoy it with your kids (wait for my next recipe).

1 comment:

  1. Love this wine. We used to prepare it at home yearly when we were in Kerala. You can check my method of rose apple wine preparation here.


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