Soursop, carambola, cassava and more
Everyone knows about Caribbean coconuts. Mango and papaya have a loyal following.
Why not add more obscure fruits and roots like soursop, carambola and dragon fruit or cassava to your diet?
Soursops are greenish prickled gourds that look like blowfish. They grow on trees in the tropics.
Soursops are picked when the skin softens to the thumbs touch and can be used indefinitely. The fruit inside sweetens with age. It’s fibrous and full of almond sized seeds. It is often pressed for milk.
The remaining pulp can be used for preserves or blended into a smoothie. Its tangy taste is exciting, and sour sop is a natural sedative too!
The star fruit, also known as carambola, originated in the tropical climate of Sri Lanka. During the last century people in the Caribbean have discovered this waxy yellow fruit, which when cut crosswise resembles a star. It can be eaten whole, skin, seeds and all, or used in jams, chutney and tarts. It adds an exotic essence to everything.
The dragon fruit is pink yellow and green cylindrical gourd with large scales that expose a reddish flesh, when peeled.
It taste a bit like kiwi fruit- only better. In the Orient, the juice is fermented for a special wine.
This fruit reportedly lowers blood pressure and fights cancer, and is also thought to protect a person from diseases of old age.
Cassava leaves are often eaten as a vegetable providing vitamins and protein. The cassava root itself is comparable to potato, but it has twice the fiber and more potassium.Try cassava as a nutritious root vegetable at dinner or slice it into chips for summer snacks.
Benjamin Boone writes frequently about nature for virginvoices com.