The Malay name for this elongated-heart shaped flower is “Jantung Pisang” or “Banana Heart”.
In the early days of my kampong life, it was a common sight – a big purplishly-red bulbous bud danging temptingly at the end of a stalk of banana fruit on each tree.
My family had our own banana trees in our compound, but we did not know what to do with those Jantung! However, we had many Indian neighbours around us, and so there was no lack of “suitors” for the beauties.
I have never eaten any food prepared with this flower, until 2 Nov 2019, when a good Indian friend treated several of us to a Kerala Restaurant – and there was a plate of Jantung Patties, for us to relish to our hearts’ content.
This item is definitely getting scarcer by the day.