Thursday, July 28, 2011
1 WHAT IS JABUTICABA?
The Jabuticaba is a fruit-bearing tree in the family Myrtaceae native to Minas Gerais in southeastern Brazil grown for the purple, grape-like fruits it produces.
What makes this fruit-bearing tree so unique is the fact that the fruits grow directly from the trunk of the tree!
The fruit is purplish black, with a white pulp; it can be eaten raw or be used to make jellies and drinks (plain juice or wine).
The fruit is 3-4 cm in diameter with one to four large seeds, borne directly on the main trunks and branches of the plant, lending a distinctive appearance to the fruiting tree. It has a thick, purple, astringent skin that covers a sweet, white, or rosy pink gelatinous flesh. Common in Brazilian markets, jaboticabas are largely eaten fresh; their popularity has been likened to that of grapes in the US.
Fresh fruit may begin to ferment 3 to 4 days after harvest, so they are often used to make jams, tarts, strong wines, and liqueurs. Due to the extremely short shelf-life, fresh jaboticaba fruit is very rare in markets outside of areas of cultivation. Traditionally, an astringent decoction of the sun-dried skins has been used as a treatment for hemoptysis, asthma, diarrhoea, and gargled for chronic inflammation of the tonsils.
It is also native to Bolivia, Paraguay, and Northern Argentina.