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  Section: Edible Plant Species
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Edible Plant Species

Aeginetia indica Linn. Orobanchaceae.

Tropics of Asia.
An annual, leafless, parasitic herb, growing on the roots of various grasses in India and the Indian Archipelago. Prepared with sugar and nutmeg, it is there eaten as an antiscorbutic.

East Indies.
The Bengal quince is held in great veneration by the Hindus. It is sacred to Siva whose worship cannot be accomplished without its leaves. It is incumbent on all Hindus to cultivate and cherish this tree and it is sacrilegious to up-root or cut it down. The Hindoo who expires under a bela tree expects to obtain immediate salvation. 6 The tenacious pulp of the fruit is used in India for sherbet and to form a conserve. Roxburgh observes that the fruit when ripe is delicious to the taste and exquisitely fragrant. Horsfield says it is considered by the Javanese to be very astringent in quality. The Bengal quince is grown in some of the gardens of Cairo. The perfumed pulp within the ligneous husk makes excellent marmalade. The orange-like fruit is very palatable and possesses aperient qualities.

Aegopodium podagraria Linn. Umbelliferae. ASHWEED. BISHOP'SWEED. GOUTWEED. GROUND ASH. HERB GERARD.
Europe and adjoining Asia.
Lightfoot says the young leaves are eaten in the spring in Sweden and Switzerland as greens. It is mentioned by Gerarde. In France it is an inmate of the flower garden, especially a variety with variegated leaves.

Aerva lanata Juss. Amaranthaceae.
Tropical Africa and Arabia.
According to Grant, this plant is used on the Upper Nile as a pot-herb.

Aesculus californica Nutt. Sapindaceae. CALIFORNIA HORSECHESTNUT.
A low-spreading tree of the Pacific Coast of the United States.
The chestnuts are made into a gruel or soup by the western Indians. The Indians of California pulverize the nut, extract the bitterness by washing with water and form the residue into a cake to be used as food.

A. hippocastanum Linn. HORSE-CHESTNUT.
The common horse-chestnut is cultivated for ornament but never for the purpose of a food supply. It is now known to be a native of Greece or the Balkan Mountains. Pickering says it was made known in 1557; Brandis, that it was cultivated in Vienna in 1576; and Emerson, that it was introduced into the gardens of France in 1615 from Constantinople. John Robinson says that it was known in England about 1580. It was introduced to northeast America, says Pickering, by European colonists. The seeds are bitter and in their ordinary condition inedible but have been used, says Balfour, as a substitute for coffee.

A. indica Coleb.
A lofty tree of the Himalaya Mountains called kunour or pangla. In times of scarcity, the seeds are used as food, ground and mixed with flour after steeping in water.

A. parviflora Walt. BUCKEYE.
Southern states of America.
The fruit, according to Browne, may be eaten boiled or roasted as a chestnut.

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