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Passion fruit

What you need to know about passion fruit

In recent times, passion fruit has gained popularity in Italy. Due to both the fruit’s name and its appearance.It is actually a very creative derivation of the “botanical” name Passiflora Edulis. It is a “normal” tropical fruit with a very soft flesh that is full of seeds and a flavour that is aromatic and pleasing. It can be sweet or sweet-sour, depending on the variety and, most importantly, the level of ripeness.

It is noteworthy for its nutritional qualities as well. It is actually incredibly high in beta-carotene, iron, potassium, dietary fibre, and vitamin C. It has 97 kcal per 100 grammes of fat, which is low but not an insignificant amount.However, these are “good” fats, such as omega-6 acids. Passion fruit is known to have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant functions. Its ability to ward off or alleviate the symptoms of colitis has also been scientifically proven.

Varieties of passion fruit

There are numerous cultivars of this fruit, especially in South America. All varieties, however, can be traced back to two broad categories: yellow passion fruit and purple passion fruit.

  • Yellow: It tastes sweeter and is noticeably larger. The peel is thicker, and the pulp has fewer seeds.
  • Purple: The dimensions are small, the peel is thin (however inedible), and the pulp is slightly acidic.

Gastronomically speaking…

Passion fruit is consumed like any other “fat” tropical fruit; our thoughts turn to avocado, with which it shares some characteristics but not the flavour. In fact, avocado can also be used for some savoury preparations, whereas passion fruit prefers almost exclusively sweet recipes. The reference is to everything fresh and summery: juices, granitas, sorbets, ice creams, milkshakes, etc. From this perspective, the pulp’s softness is quite beneficial.

It’s a classic cocktail ingredient. In reality, it is rarely integrated into the cocktail in the form of juice; rather, it is placed as a pleasant garnish element that adds flavour and improves the aesthetic impact of the drink (a fundamental element). Since passion fruit is highly adaptable and can provide a great deal of satisfaction in the kitchen, I encourage you to try as many recipes with it as you can.

What is passion fruit good for?

Passion fruit is not only an exquisite and “beautiful to look at” fruit but is also good for your health. I have already mentioned the nutritional principles it contains, but I think it is useful to delve deeper.

For instance, the immune system is strengthened and anaemia is mostly prevented by the consumption of vitamin C, which is only marginally less than that of citrus fruits. This vitamin makes it easier for iron to be absorbed. In addition, a high fibre content promotes digestion and controls intestinal transit.

Additionally, there is a fair amount of vitamin A, which is beneficial to the skin and eyes. Many antioxidants are also present; these compounds aid in the prevention of cancer, decelerate the ageing process, and neutralise free radicals.

As regards mineral salts, we find potassium, a substance that regulates blood pressure. Beyond its “substantial” calorie intake, passion fruit is generally regarded as a healthy fruit.

Who shouldn’t eat passion fruit?

It is rare to find “absolute” contraindications to the consumption of fruits, i.e., not due to pathological situations; the same goes for passion fruit. In this case, those suffering from dairy allergies should avoid eating “passion fruit,” as this substance is present in the passion fruit, although not in high doses.

In any case, it is best not to indulge in excessive consumption of passion fruit. The fibre intake is really high, so it could turn into a double-edged sword, i.e., it can have a laxative effect.

Gastritis and reflux sufferers also need to be careful. In this case, it is imperative to verify the food’s acidity. Because passion fruit has a low acidity, some people may find it uncomfortable, though it is not as acidic as tomatoes.

The passion fruit flower, a wonder of nature

It is worth saying a few words about the flower too, and not just the fruit. The “passion flower,” officially known as “Passiflora,” is in fact among the most beautiful and unique of all. It seems that Mother Nature gave birth to her creativity when she “gave birth” to the passion flower.

The flower has large, multicoloured petals, enriched with green and purple shades. The pistil is very developed and evolves into unexpected shapes.

The passionflower can be used for decorative purposes, and it is also a gastronomic-therapeutic resource. In fact, it is consumed in the form of an infusion to alleviate intestinal problems in addition to treating insomnia. Taking care of oneself with passionflower is a delight because of its pleasant and delicate flavour.

The most unique uses of this fruit

Passion fruit can also be used for savoury recipes. For example, it can be transformed into a delicate but tasty sauce to season meat and fish. This gives the second course a sweet and sour character. The sauce, in reality, is nothing more than a compote made without sugar. It is especially perfect with salmon and grilled chicken.

Nonetheless, marinated foods can be seasoned with passion fruit sauce. In this instance, a “powerful” marinade created with a variety of spices is required. Actually, there’s a chance that the fruit will completely mask the flavour of the fish or meat, throwing off the dish’s harmony.

To lessen the flavour of the sauce, you can occasionally “improve” it with salty or neutral broth. A lovely concept makes dashi, or traditional Japanese fish soup, the star.