aegletree fruit

[English] plural aegletree fruits

The woodapple or elephant apple is a jungle fruit about the size of an orange from India and Sri Lanka. The shell is hard and woody, not surprisingly, and rough grey in appearance. The best way to get into it, rather as for a coconut, is by throwing it onto a concrete floor. It can be eaten raw or mashed with sugar and water to make into sherbets. The pulp is used, grated, with chilli powder, onions, salt and lime juice to make a sour sambal. It is also known as the elephant apple because elephants are thought to consume the woodapple whole. When their droppings are examined they are found to contain whole shells which, when opened, are found to be empty of their contents. Could it be that the elephant digests the pulp without the shell?

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