Get to Know Pala, the Star of Spices from Banda"From Trademap Data, Indonesia is one of the largest pala (nutmeg) producers in the world. Pala has been a bone of contention since colonial times. Because of nutmeg, the most expensive swap deal in the history of world trade was made by the Dutch and British. Island Run with Manhattan"
Published by : administrator - 01/12/2021 15:40 WIB
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On July 31, 1667, in the City of Breda, the Netherlands, England and the Netherlands signed the Breda Agreement, one of the contents of which was the swap agreement between Run Island in Maluku and Manhattan Island in America. Run Island, which was previously controlled by the British, became the property of the Dutch. Meanwhile, Manhattan Island, which was a Dutch colony, officially became British rights. All of that happened because of a commodity called pala (nutmeg) or Myristica fragrans.
Pala is a spice that comes from the pala tree. The jalurrempah.kemdikbud.go.id, mentions that the pala tree comes from the Banda Islands, Maluku. In addition to the seeds, mace or the seed coats and pala fruit also have high commodity values.
A pala looks like a lemon in its shape. It is yellow in color and has a distinctive aroma from the content of essential oils. Pala is two-housed, so there are male and female trees. Seeds that are used as spices are dried seeds, where the seeds and skin are usually separated. When ripe, pala will open, the mace that wraps the seeds will be torn so that the seeds are visible.
Nutmeg seeds should be dried for six to eight weeks. During this drying process, the inner seeds usually shrink to separate from the seed coat. Apart from seeds, mace and fruit flesh are also used as spices. Besides being dried, nutmeg seeds are also processed in other ways to become nutmeg oil.
In addition to its usefulness, pala becomes a bone of contention for many parties, because this plant takes a long time to harvest. pala farmers can only harvest pala trees for the first time after seven to nine years since tree planting. Even the pala tree reaches its maximum production capacity at the age of 25 years. The age of the tree itself can be hundreds of years, and can grow up to 20 meters.
In addition to its usefulness, nutmeg becomes a bone of contention for many parties, because this plant takes a long time to harvest. Nutmeg farmers can only harvest nutmeg trees for the first time after seven to nine years since tree planting. Even the nutmeg tree reaches its maximum production capacity at the age of 25 years. The age of the tree itself can be hundreds of years, and can grow up to 20 meters.
Apart from the Banda Islands, pala has spread to various regions. This tree tends to be easier to grow in the tropics. Its distribution includes China, Taiwan, Malaysia, the Caribbean Islands, Sri Lanka, India, and South Africa. In Indonesia, apart from the Maluku Islands, pala is also widely produced in West Java, Aceh, West Sumatra and Papua.
Pala is widely used in jamu and various spice drinks, including Wedang Saraba and Bir Pletok. You can see the making of Wedang Saraba and Bir Pletok on the JamupediaTV Youtube channel.
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