Saturday, January 21, 2017

Soursop or Guanabana

Soursop or guanabana is native to the West Indies and northern South America. Today it is grown in Bermuda, the Bahamas, and from Southern Mexico to Peru and Argentina, as well as Southeast Asia. 

The fruit is heart-shaped (human heart, not valentine heart) with shamrock-green skin while it is immature, then turns more yellowish green as it matures and then darkens and becomes soft to the touch. It has limp spines that are soft and pliable with tips that easily break off when the fruit is mature. Inside it is white with inedible black seeds and a pithy core, similar to a pineapple. 
A soursop on the tree (from Wikipedia). Note the limpy spines that are missing in the later photos.
Soursop as it ripens.
I obtained a soursop from Exotic Meat Market and was told to let it sit until it got soft and was turning dark. 
The soursop as it looked the day I ate it.
First I watched a video on how to cut open a soursop (no big deal). I cut it lengthwise and it cut easily. Inside it is white like cherimoya, but has the physical characteristics (other than color) of a pineapple. 
It is one of the most interesting fruits I've ever tried. The texture is complex and changes inside your mouth. At first it is custardy, very smooth and creamy, then it turns pulpy, and then in some bites turns stringy (there were some small pieces I did not swallow, but removed from my mouth). For people who are bothered by unfamiliar textures, it may cause mind games. It is unlike any fruit I've had before. I'm quite an adventurous eater, but I'm not a fan of overly ripe fruit. For example, I will not eat bananas with dark spots or that are turning mushy, although I love them mixed up in banana bread. So the dark outside skin of the soursop and some of the ripeness inside created some minor mental barriers for me. However, the taste is a very nice combination of sweet and lightly sour, unique and marvelous. For Judy, the after-taste was like peaches. 

This photo shows some seeds and the stringy middle.
I ate half in the evening, shared some with Judy, then had the rest in a bowl of oatmeal in the morning. I felt like the oatmeal overshadowed it. It was much better plain. It is said to be good in smoothies and ice cream.

Updated:

In April 2017 we were visiting a Korean store in the Koreatown area of Los Angeles and saw a container of soursop juice. I had to have some. The picture shows that the juice is a brownish color and it is quite dense and thick. The texture reminds me of peach nectar, which is interesting because the fruit reminded Judy of peaches. The juice is very, very sweet, sweeter than any other fruit juice I can think of. I enjoyed it very much, but a little goes a long way.
Soursop juice

1 comment:

  1. The texture almost overpowers the flavor, which is weird. I stand by my ripe peaches taste, but it definitely doesn't have the texture of peaches.

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