Kewra, keora or kewda (Hindi: केवड़ा, Bengali: কেওড়া, Urdu: کیوڑہin Punjabi ਕੇਵੜਾ/کیوڑہ )is an extract distilled from the flower of the pandanus plant. It is primarily used to flavour South Asian cuisine. pandanus is native to tropical South Asia, Southeast Asia, Australasia and is used as flavouring agent through out much of these regions.
The male pandanus flower is almost exclusively used for kewra distillation. Approximately 95% of total kewra flower exported from India is collected from areas surrounding Berhampur city in Ganjam district. The coastal areas of Chhatrapur, Rangeilunda, Patrapur and Chikiti are famous for their aromatic pandanus plantations. Arguably, flowers from coastal locales have an exquisite floral note that rival inland varieties with the most famous varieties being those endemic and cultivated in Gopalpur-on-Sea. Cultivation of kewra flower is a major source of income in Ganjam district and there are nearly 200 registered kewra distillation factories.
Kewra is also an ingredient of attar, a fragrant perfume particularly popular in Arab and other Muslim countries, and globally among perfume connoisseurs. Attar produced from kewra is considered rare. Kewra flower has a smooth, refreshing fruity scent with hints of rose, hyacinth and honey. Anecdotally, kewra attar is thought to facilitate lifting of creative blocks, especially for artists and writers.
- It is used to flavour meats, drinks, and desserts in India, specially the northern part and Southeast Asia.
- Sweets like ras gullas, ras malai and many more bengali sweets can be dipped or soaked in kewra water to give it a floral flavour.
- Another application is in the highly aromatic rice dishes,specially of the Moghul cuisine. The most elaborate rice recipes sometimes call for kewra water to be sprinkled over the rice just before serving.
- It can be combined with other floral waters such as rose water and added together on the recipe.
- It can be used as a health drink.
Sorry, we have been unable to source reliable nutritional data for this item
- You can substitute 1 teaspoon pandan extract per ½ cup kewra water
- or substitute equal parts rose water