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St. Croix Caribbean Fruit Part II

When it comes to fruit, it’s hard to pick a favorite -especially when St. Croix has so many to choose from.  I suppose for me, it comes down to what season it is because trust me, when mango season hits, you’ll find me beneath the trees mono-mealing a dozen of them, no joke.  So in no particular order, this is the second part to my Crucian Caribbean fruit collection.

Sugar apples {sugarsop/custard apples} have super sweet and creamy segmented fruit within.  They actually don’t taste like apples and are related to atemoya or cherimoya.

Lilikoi {passionfruit} as pictured in the center here, come more often in the yellow variety on St. Croix.  Their sweet tart gel is best slathered on watermelon or papaya.  The experience of enjoying this special combination is heaven on earth.  The orange fruit at its sides are sapodilla {a brown sugared pear tasting fruit} with purple star apples all around which is a new favorite of mine.  When cut into just right, the centers reveal a star shape, hence its name.  Its centers are jelly like and sweet.

Of course no list would be complete without mango.  It’s a pretty big deal here and with so many varieties to choose from, you’re bound to find one you like.  Before moving here, I had no idea there were so many shapes, sizes and tastes to choose from.  In season, the entire island is heavily fragranced with all of the mango coming in. It’s a beautiful sight {and scent!} to experience.

Sour oranges remind me of Korean yuja {yuzu} and they make for a popular cocktail mixer or dessert similar to key lime pie here.  It’s kind of in between an orange and a lemon and is certain to brighten up any salsa, drink, meal or treat.

I’m not sure if soursop {graviola, guyabano or guanábana} cures cancer like they claim but I do know that its creamy-dreamy pulp is delicious straight up or frozen into slushies.  Its leaves are also excellent in bush tea which is an all-purpose cure-all tea with things from the bush: lemon grass, hibiscus, tulsi, etc.

Carambola {starfruit} deserves props for many things but most of all, its resilient nature.  I noticed that after Maria, it was one of the only trees that remained untouched and began bearing fruit shortly thereafter.  In our house, we like it juiced, in fruit salsa, candied, pickled, in jam, in hot sauce, in smoothies…so many different things!

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