With its origins in the Peruvian Andes, chirimoya is a fruit that stands out for its mouth-watering flavor and high vitamin B6, potassium and vitamin C content, the latter of which contributes to the synthesis of collagen, bones and teeth. Every 100 grams of fruit provides the body with 32% of the daily amount of vitamin C that a person should consume.
It also contains smaller amounts of vitamins B1 and B2, as well as minerals such as iron, calcium and phosphorus, all of which are recommended for a nutritious diet.
Known scientifically as Annona cherimola this fruit, besides being a source of antioxidants, helps to reduce cholesterol and, thanks to its potassium content, stimulates the proper functioning of the muscles and the nervous system.
Chirimoya is produced in Peru, mainly in the regions of Lima, Cajamarca, Piura, Junín, Apurímac and Cusco. Now that you know the main health benefits of chirimoya, take a look at our ideas for some wonderful ways of eating this fruit.
Ice cream. This is probably one of the tastiest ways to enjoy chirimoya. Firstly, chill the cream in a mixing bowl; then, mix with lemon juice until it thickens; whilst continuing to stir, add salt, the chirimoya pulp, some almond essence and sugar. Finally, put the mixture into a container and refrigerate for a few hours.
Chirimoya mousse. A scrumptious dessert. To start with, whisk together some cream cheese, condensed milk, sugar and orange zest, adding some vanilla and dissolved unflavored gelatin. Next, mix with chirimoya puree and pour into a previously frozen mold. Decorate the mousse with slices of chirimoya and serve with vanilla sauce and chocolate ganache.
Chirimoya cheesecake. Another exquisite dessert. The first step is to mix the crumbled cookies, ground nuts, sugar and melted butter, and then bake in the oven for 10 to 15 minutes. For the filling, beat the cream cheese together with the condensed milk, chirimoya pulp and dissolved unflavored gelatin. This mixture should be added to the previous preparation, and then refrigerated for approximately 4 hours. The cheesecake is then demolded and topped with chopped chirimoya.
Juices and smoothies. A quick and delicious way to enjoy chirimoya fruit. The first thing you need to do is remove the chirimoya seeds; then blend the chirimoya with a little water. You can also mix it with other fruits such as mango, orange and apple.
Chicken in chirimoya sauce. Although chirimoya fruit is most commonly associated with desserts, you can prepare it in other ways. This dish is one example. Stir together some fried onion, garlic and tomatoes in a saucepan. Next, incorporate some chicken pieces (previously browned) and chicken broth, leaving it all to cook for 8 or 10 minutes. Before it completely thickens, add some the shredded chirimoya and finely chopped peanut. Cook for a few more minutes; finally, decorate with sesame and serve.
Did you know?
- Upon discovery of the chirimoya fruit, the Spaniards called it "manjar blanco”, or “blancmange”, due to its soft interior. It was they who introduced this fruit to Europe, and then to Africa.
- Its name derives from the Quechua "chirimuya", or "cold seeds", as its main habitat is at high elevation, up to 2,500 m a.s.l. (8,200 ft a.s.l.).
Sources: Minagri/ Agrorural/ Peru.com/ Diariamente Ali/ Yanuq/ Wapa/ chirimoyas.es