Passion fruit

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The passion fruit is an egg-shaped tropical fruit that is also called a purple granadilla. It has a wrinkled purple-brown rind enclosing flesh-covered seeds.The seeds are edible.

The pulp of the passion fruit is light yellow and mucilaginous with a jelly-like and watery texture. The flavor is often likened to guava.

It is a native of the rainforest margins in the Amazon region of Brazil. It has adapted to the cooler sub-tropics and the high altitude tropics. It is also grown in Hawaii, Florida, and California.

The name passionfruit was given to it by Spanish missionaries who thought that parts of the plant's flower resembled different religious symbols. The Jesuit missionaries saw in its flower a means of illustrating the Crucifixion; the 10 petals and sepals represented the apostles, the crown of thorns was seen in the filaments, the five anthers represent the five wounds, the three stigmas were allied with the nails used to pierce the hands and feet of Jesus and the vine's tendrils were equated with the whips.

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[edit] Medicinal Uses

The juice and the leaves of passion fruit contain the alkaloids, including Harman, which reduces blood pressure and has a sedative and antispasmodic action. The leaves are used in many countries as medicine.

The flower of passion fruit can help to induce sleep. It is used in the treatment of nervous children, bronchial asthma, insomnia, nervous gastrointestinal disorders and menopausal problems.

[edit] How to select and store

The skin of the fruit has a leathery appearance. Choose fruit that has supple skin and gives when lightly pressed. Very smooth skin is an indication that the fruit is immature. Also avoid fruit with a lot of black spots. The fruit should be dark in color, as egg-shaped as possible and heavy.

If the skin is slightly rumpled it is ready to eat. To allow unripe fruit to mature leave at room temperature, away from direct sunlight.Plcae ripe fruit in the refrigerator.

[edit] Serving ideas

  • Cut in half and eat with a spoon.
  • Purée to make jellies, creams, sorbets and ice cream.
  • Use passion fruit juice to flavor cocktails.
  • Try a cocktail of rum, cane syrup and passion fruit juice.
  • Spoon this fruit over low-fat yogurt to make a colorful treat.
  • Add passion fruit to mixed green salads or fruit salads for a new taste.
  • Top chicken, fish, or pork with a spoonful of passion fruit for a change.

Common Uses of Passion Fruit Oil

  • Suncare products
  • Bath Oils
  • Massage products

[edit] Useful websites