Borneo jungle fern

Posted on March 19, 2020 · Posted in Blog, General, Personal

 In the Borneo jungle, the jungle fern is eaten by animals and insects.  It is eaten by the people of Sarawak.  It is edible, in particular, the first portion of the plant when it is plucked off.  If it fails to break, bend or is hard when broken, it is not eaten.  The indigenous people of Sarawak have been eating it for centuries.  It is a jungle surviving food or vegetable.

The locals call jungle fern ‘paku’.  There are other types of jungle ferns.  One of them is called ‘midin’.  ‘Paku’ and ‘Midin’ are sold in the jungle produce market in the city of Kuching, Sarawak, Borneo.  For ‘Paku’, the fern is sliced in half and soaked in water and is washed over several changes of water.

It is cooked with peanut cooking oil with a bit of chili, garlic, onions and belacan- shrimp paste or dried prawns.  A bit of salt is added if there is no shrimp paste because the latter is salty enough.  ‘Paku’ and ‘midin’ are loved by all races including the Malays, the Chinese, the indigenous races of Sarawak and the Indians.

Midin and Paku are considered ‘cold’ vegetables.  For consumption, it is ‘balanced’ with hot spices like chili and Chinese red wine which are used to cook ‘Midin’.  The Foochow people of Sibu cook ‘midin’ with red wine, garlic and a bit of oyster sauce.  ‘Midin’ is another type of  ‘paku’. ‘Paku’ is thick and dark green.  ‘Midin’, on the other hand, is thin, reddish and delicate.  ‘Paku’ (thick green jungle fern) is more commonly found in the city near river fringes and behind housing estates.

The fern is used in tattoo motif designs, high fashion fabric and apparel and costume designs, handicrafts, wood carvings, potteries, home furnishing, hotel decor, creative arts and even as a product name.  Nature is reflected in all these mediums of arts.  I see the fern in every native arts and crafts.  It is the stamp of Sarawak.  It is synonymous with the rain forest of Borneo.  It is the symbol of Borneo. – matahariborneo.blogNatural memory enhancer