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Peach Palm Pejibaye

A Fruit that is Virtually Unknown in North America or anywhere else at the world
It has a good export potential since it is a hard fruit,so it can travel well

I  first found out about this delicious fruit from my friend Craig that went with his sons 3x to Costa Rica to learn spanish.Intrigued by this fruit,I and Craig  decided in  97 to go there and  look for it.We left Milwaukee  for Chicago O Hare airport on a very cold minus 40 C day in Feb,when we hit Chicago traffic it caused us to miss our flight.After waiting 12 hrs, we finally got there. It took us 3 days at the different  markets to find this delish. Costa Rica farming, as veteran devotees of agrotourism can attest, yields many unfamiliar, usually delightful, flavors and eating experiences. Consider one of the most distinct rewards of agrotourism in Costa Rica, the peach palm fruit.  It is known as pejivalle in Costa Rica; peach-nut, pewa or pupunha in Trinidad; piva in Panama; cachipay, chichagai, chichaguai, contaruro, chonta, choritadura, chenga, jijirre, pijiguay, pipire, pirijao, pupunha, or tenga in Colombia; bobi, cachipaes, rnacanilla, melocoton, pichiguao, pihiguao, pijiguao, piriguao, or pixabay in Venezuela; comer, chonta, and tempe in Bolivia; chonta dura, chonta ruru, pijuanyo, pifuayo, sara-pifuayo, pisho-guayo in Peru; amana, in Surinam; parepon in French Guiana; popunha in Brazil. These strange-looking fruits at the market or steaming in a street corner vendor’s pot come from perhaps the most important plant in the human history of the lowland American tropics. (Costa Rican lowlands are generally found on both coasts, near Barra del Colorado, on the Caribbean, for example, and Palmar Sur on the Pacific side.)

Native to Amazonia, the peach palm fruit was scattered widely by Amerindians throughout the region, where it served as a source of wood for construction and as material for bows, arrows and spears. The peach palm fruit also provided indigenous peoples of the region with flour, palm heart, and cooked fruit flesh rich in vitamins A and C. Paleobotanical records indicate that the peach palm fruit was being cultivated in Costa Rica as early as 2300 B.C., and when Spanish explorers arrived in Costa Rica in the early 1500s, the peach palm fruit was essential for the sustenance of the indigenous peoples of the Caribbean region. The peach palm fruit persists to this day as a popular delicacy in modern Costa Rica. It’s not difficult to see why it became an important crop for Costa Rica farming.But not very popular in it's capitol,hence a 3 day search

Upon first tasting the bright orange and yellow peach palm fruit, the agrotourism-inspired visitor might wonder just how it came to be so widespread and why Costa Ricans treasure it so much today. With a flavor reminiscent of dry butternut squash mixed with dry pumpkin, peach palm fruit is certainly an acquired taste (it tastes nothing like peaches!). But cooked in salty boiling water and then peeled and served with a dollop of mayonnaise or sour cream –a favorite way of eating the peach palm fruit in Costa Rica – the peach palm is, in fact, delicious. And when pureed, it forms the base for a cream soup with a rich, exotic flavor second to none.

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