Ternate Island Butterfly Pea

Ark of taste
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Ternate Island Butterfly Pea

Bunga telang

Bunga telang (Clitoria ternatea) is known in English as butterfly pea, blue pea or cordofan pea. It is a plant species belonging to the Fabaceae family. The flowers of this vine have the shape of human female genitals, hence the Latin name of the genus, Clitoria. As indicated by its Latin name, bunga telang originated from Ternate island (including Gilolo), in the eastern part of Indonesia, and has spread across Southeast Asia and other continents.   It normally grows wild in the outskirts of forests or near riverbanks. It is also grown as an ornamental plant. As a legume, it is also planted as a nitrogen fixer. It is a perennial herbaceous plant, with oval shaped leaves. It grows as a vine or creeper, doing well in moist, neutral soil. The most striking feature about this plant is its vivid deep blue flowers with white markings. Fruits are 5 -7 cm long flat pods containing 6 – 10 seeds per pod. They are edible fresh when tender.   The flowers are also edible hand have a mild, sweet taste. They can also be fried. A bright blue tea can also be prepared from the flowers, and the flowers can be used as a natural food coloring in other recipes (usually rice). Traditionally, Ternate people used to use bunga telang as herbal plant considered to have healing purposes. No parts of the plant are currently sold on the market in eastern Indonesia, and the family known to still grow it uses it only for home consumption. Because the culinary and health purposes of this plant are not promoted in its region of origin, it is being lost from the shared heritage of the area. 

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Production area:Ternate Island

Other info



Tea and infusions

Nominated by:Irtamazati Husna e Martin Kreshna