Kancanara Tvak

Kancanara tvak (Bauhinia variegata)



  1. In Sanskrit, the word Kanchnar means “A glowing beautiful lady” because of its use in treating skin diseases.
  2. The bark of the planet is used in fever, as tonic and astringent, as antileprotic, in skin diseases and wound healing, antigoitrogenic, and as antitumor.
  3. The bark is also documented as astringent to the bowels, tonic to the liver, and beneficial for the cure of dysmenorrhea, menorrhagia, tuberculosis, asthma, and wounds.
  4. The roots are used as antidote to snake poison.
  5. In folklore medicine, this plant is also used for managing several diseases including inflammatory conditions 


How to grow this plant at home?

Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils.

Suitable pH: acid and neutral soils and can grow in saline soils.

It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers moist or wet soil.

Seed - pre-soak for 12 hours in warm water then sow in mid spring in a greenhouse. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant out in early summer, after the last expected frosts and consider giving some protection from the cold for their first winter or two outdoors. Cuttings of half-ripe wood, with the leaves removed, in moist sand July/August in a frame. Gentle bottom heat is usually required. Layering can be carried out.


Dishes you can try out with this plant

  1. Kachnar and potato mixed-veg:


For cooking the kachnar buds

1 tbsp ghee

1 tsp cumin

Pinch of asafetida

Pinch of ginger powder

For the dish

  • chopped tomatoes

1/2 kg boiled potatoes

1 bowl Kachnar buds

1/2 tsp turmeric

1/2 tsp sugar

Salt to taste


Boil water and soak the buds for few minutes. Heat the ghee and add the condiments. After frying it for five minutes, put the buds in the pan and sauté it to get the cooked buds.

 In a different pan, sauté tomatoes with turmeric powder for two minutes. Add potatoes. Sauté for 10 minutes. Then add the cooked buds, sugar, and salt.

Add three cups of water to the mixture. Cook for five minutes and serve.

  1. Kachnar flavored yoghurt


1 cup Kachnar buds

2 cups natural, thick yoghurt

Salt to taste

1 tsp. dry roasted cumin seeds, coarsely ground

1-2 green chilies, finely chopped


Boil the buds in water for 5-6 minutes, drain water, and allow the buds to cool. Gently press to remove the remaining water. Keep it aside.

Mix the other ingredients in yoghurt, beat gently, and then add cooled buds. Fold in gently.

Transfer to a serving bowl. You can decorate it with 1-2 Kachnar flowers.

Serve chilled.

  1. Kachnar buds salad


Kachnar buds (Bauhinia Variegated Buds) - 200 grams

Green chilies - 2 to 3

Ginger - 1 inch long piece

Oil - 2 tbsp

Heeng (asafoetida) - 1 pinch

Jeera (cumin seeds) - 1/2 tsp

Turmeric powder - 1/4 tsp

Coriander (dhaniya) - 2 tsp

Salt - add to taste (1/2 tsp)

Red chili powder - less than 1/4 tsp

Amchur(mango) powder - 1/2 tsp

Garam masala - less than 1/4 tsp

Green coriander - 1tbsp (finely chopped)


Clean Kachnar buds, break the fat stems, and remove them from the buds. Wash these buds 2-3 times with clean water.

Take 2 cups of water (or enough to easily submerege the buds) in a utensil and place it on the gas to boil. Add 1/2 tsp salt to the water. After the water starts to boil put the Kachnar buds in it and when the water again comes to boil let it boil for another 3-4 minutes. Turn off the gas, drain out the water and let the buds cool off.

Break off the stems of the green chillies, wash then finely chop them. Peel, wash and grate ginger then make its paste.

Pour oil in a frying pan(kadhai) and heat, put heeng and Jeera in hot oil. Once the Jeera is roasted add turmeric powder, coriander powder, finely chopped chillies, ginger paste and gently fry. Put 2 tbsp water, red chilly powder, Amchur powder, salt and also garam masala. Fry all these spices till the spices seem to have a granular texture or oil starts to float over them. Now put the boiled Kachnar buds and green coriander, cook for 3-4 minutes. Turn off the gas, keep the vegetable covered for 4-5 minutes.


  1. https://pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Bauhinia+variegata
  2. Mishra, Amita et al. “Bauhinia variegata leaf extracts exhibit considerable antibacterial, antioxidant, and anticancer activities.” BioMed research international 2013 (2013): 915436. doi:10.1155/2013/915436
  3. https://www.mid-day.com/articles/three-recipes-of-dishes-made-from-indias-lesser-known-food-items/15785193
  4. https://www.mamtaskitchen.com/recipe_display.php?id=13913
  5. https://nishamadhulika.com/en/368-kachnar-kali-recipe.html