Papait Plant (Bacopa Monniere)
With our love with gardening, and seeing both my parents tend our vegetable garden, there's this one small plant that is always present on our small garden for about three years now, that is if I'm not mistaken. This annual herb had never failed to get back to life every Spring with the tiny, oblong-shaped leaves slowly gaining back its greeny color once again and then as Summer approaches, turns even more greener and livelier. This is the papait, as we call it.
Bacopa monniere, or the papait as we call it, is a herb with a bitter taste just like bitter melon. It grows wildly on empty lots, reseeding itself resulting for more sarsalida to be harvested and enjoyed to whoever would discover its area.
Memories with papait plant:
Back when I was about 5 or 6 years old, I have memories of me excitedly walking along with my mom as she invites me to come with her to a nearby empty acre where the papait wildly grows. My mother would happily harvest the papait she sees while I followed her around, telling me how good those papait are and that she's looking forward on having it on either lunch or dinner.
Of all those years, there's only one way I had seen my parents and Ilocano relatives indulge themselves with papait, and that is boiled papait leaves enjoyed with diced tomatoes, onions,and sometimes with diced green mango and seasoned with soy sauce and lime or with fermented shrimp sauce. I knew there would be another way that some people may enjoy this bitter herb, and on my way around the web, here's what I found:
* This could be enjoyed stir fried. Your choice of vegetables whether you want it with potatoes, or yam maybe and other greens.
* Either raw or blanched, papait herb is consumed with potatoes, onions, and bagoong (fermented fish or shrimp sauce.) This is the way I've always seen my mom enjoy this plant.
* Despite the bitterness, some people enjoys sauteed papait with tomatoes and ground meat.
* Added to sauteed mung beans.
* Some cooked this together with egg.
Above are the papait plant we have on a pot. With the weather getting hot, it is now turning all green like its supposed to be and starting to branch out. On Summer days, this papait would spread, covering the whole pot with its tiny leaves. It also bears flowers, little white flowers appears on hotter days.
Health Benefits and Uses Of Papait:
* Papait or known as bacopa monniere, is used to treat anemia, worm infestation and even malaria.
* The juice is used to sooth itchy skin, and herb is also used in Mali for inflammation and intestinal parasites.
* Eating papait can help on lowering blood sugar level.
* Papait is considered a stomachi and antiseptic.
Planting papait: So how do you plant papait? If you live in the province where it wildly grows, you are lucky. But if you want to have them around so you can harvest some whenever you feel like having some, soak papait stems in a glass of water and watch them grow roots and transplant them. Or just plant them directly on the soil.
Do you know about this herb?
After a month, I had taken another photo of the papait plant in the pot and here it is below, ready to reach the pavement. And when that happens, that means fresh papait for my mom who loves this herb.
Below are photos of my uncle's papait plants in pots when we dropped by to his place 9th of June. We went first to the parish fiesta and since his home is so close, we paid him a visit.
Papait plants on pots.
Above video of papait plants in pots was taken when dad, mom and I dropped by to uncle's place one Summer. Mom was happy to harvest and she was looking forward into blanching them and having them with tomatoes and fermented fish (bagoong.)
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