Pukkapedia - Kapikacchu
Latin: Mucuna pruriens
This broad bean sized seed is a superb restorative to the reproductive system. Like many seeds it has the ability to potentiate the reproductive tissue as well as the nervous system. It is also used to treat tremors and spasms. The surface of the seed pods are 'velvety' like a monkey's skin. It is also an allergenic which causes an itch, hence the name 'one who scratches like a monkey'. Atmagupta means 'secret self' referring to its therapeutic seed concealed within the irritating bean pod.
Kapikachu (Mucuna pruriens) is a wild bean that grows in the tropics._x000D_
The leaves are tripinnate (grow in groups of three), covered in hairs when young, and without hairs when older.
The flowers hang in large white, lavender or purple 'panicles'. The photo here was taken in Chikmagalur in the Western Ghats (south-west India).
The seed pods are covered in small bristly hairs that can cause skin irritations. Kapikachu is also known as 'atmagupta', which means 'secret self', referring to its therapeutic seed concealed within the irritating bean pod.
Kapikachu seeds are similar in size to broad beans. They can either be white or black.
Dried Kapikachu Beans
Fresh Kapikachu beans can be eaten if they are thoroughly soaked and boiled. For medicinal use they are normally dried and powdered for use in capsules.