Unkindly named but understandably, Ugli™ fruit, pronounced OO-gli, is wrapped in a rough, puffy, slightly loose-fitting greenish-yellow to orange baggy fragrant skin.
Violina Di Rugosa Butternut Squash
Violina di Rugosa squash is an heirloom butternut named after its violin shape and rough or scalloped skin.
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Lucuma is a round or oval-shaped fruit that has a thin green skin, and grows to around 6 centimeters in diameter. This exotic fruit resembles an avocado, until one opens the fruit to reveal Lucuma’s bright yellow inner flesh. Each fruit features 1 to 5 shiny, dark brown seeds. The pulp is dry, with a texture reminiscent of cooked egg yolk. The taste of the pulp is sweet and rich, and is often likened to baked sweet potato or pumpkin with strong hints of maple and caramel, and tones of custard, mango and apricot.
Lucuma fruit is available year-round, with a peak season in the summer months.
Lucuma is a subtropical fruit that is botanically classified as Pouteria lucuma. Also referred to as Lucmo, Lucuma belongs to the Sapotaceae family, and is related to the sapote. Lucuma is also called Eggfruit, referring to Lucuma’s yellow pulp that has the look and feel of a hard-boiled egg yolk. Lucuma is gaining popularity as a superfood, as it is a highly nutritious fruit that has positive effects on skin and cardiovascular health, and blood sugar levels.
Lucuma contains carotene, vitamins B and C, and trace minerals. It also contains miraculin, a protein that causes the taste buds to perceive sour or acidic foods as sweet. Lucuma has been studied for its anti-aging, wound-healing, and anti-inflammatory effects.
Lucuma fruit can be eaten raw, out of hand. In Peru, Lucuma is one of the most popular ice cream flavors, and can also be combined with milk or fruit juice to make shakes. It can be used as a pie filling, and for preserves. Lucuma is also found in powder form, and is commonly used as a sweetener. Lucuma powder can be used in place of sugar in raw food smoothies, mixed into yogurt, or sprinkled onto cereal. Store Lucuma fruit whole in the refrigerator, where they will last for around a week.
Archeologists have discovered images of Lucuma fruit on ceramics at burial sites of the indigenous people of coastal Peru, indicating the importance of the fruit there. Lucuma was a symbol of fertility for the Incans, and remains a staple food in Peru, where 26 villages are named after it. The Lucuma tree is known as “the tree of life” in such communities, and was once called the “gold of the Incas”. Ancient texts say that Lucuma was used for digestion and skin health.
Lucuma was used by the Incans and has been cultivated since 200 A.D. It is found in Peru, Ecuador and Chile, and was used in times of famine and scarcity. It was first reported by Europeans in Ecuador in 1531. Lucuma today can also be found in Bolivia, Vietnam and Laos. Although Lucuma is found in tropical countries, it grows best in temperate regions. Lucuma has been introduced successfully in the foothills of California, but has failed in Florida.
Recipes that include Lucuma. One is easiest, three is harder.