Black sapote is the most interesting fruit and one of the most interesting foods I've ever eaten. I was given one by C. c. Claudia and told not to eat it until it got very, very soft. When I got it it was roundish, dark to yellow green, had a star-shaped stem base, was about the size of a small grapefruit, and was quite hard.
|Un-ripe black sapote.|
I let it sit for several weeks until it looked revoltingly spoiled, all puckered up and misshapen. The skin was very thin and I actually put my finger through the skin just holding it, exposing the black fruit inside. If I'd not learned about this ahead of time, I would have tossed it as being way too ripe. I watched an on-line video on how to cut one open and the people doing it cut into the fruit before it was fully ripe. Look at the fruit in the video and compare it to the one below. Unlike the people in the video, I had no problem cutting through the fruit.
|This wrinkled, misshapen fruit looks way too ripe, but it is perfect.|
The inside of the fruit is dark black with light brown seeds surrounded by seed sacks. The seeds and seed sacks need to be removed.
|Black fruit with brown seeds.|
|The seed sacks are visible where the seeds have been removed.|
The outside skin breaks very easily, so you have to be careful removing the inner fruit so that you don't get pieces of the inedible skin mixed in with it.
|The outside skin of the black sapote after I've tried scraping off as much of the fruit as I could. The shape evidences how thin and delicate the skin is and the numerous tears I made as I worked on it.|
The inside fruit has the consistency and mouth-feel of chocolate pudding, in fact, it is sometimes called the chocolate pudding fruit, but it is not very sweet, in fact it is quite bland. Claudia suggested adding a bit of honey, a few drops of vanilla extract, a pinch of cinnamon and a pinch of cardamon. She said that it transformed the fruit into something else entirely. I did as she suggested, and in fact, then added a bit more cinnamon and honey and liked it even more.
|I spoonful of black sapote pudding after it has been doctored with honey, cinnamon, cardamon and vanilla.|
The fruit is native to eastern Mexico, the Caribbean, Central America and Colombia. It is now grown in the Philippines, Australia and Florida and great genetic variability exists.
I previously had a white sapote and now as I look back at my post I can tell I ate it much too early. I'll have to look for it again.