Also called Chinola juice, Passion fruit juice is incredibly delicious. It’s quite tart and subtly sweet, and used in desserts, it’s absolutely dreamy! It’s easy to learn how to juice and use passion fruit. Get to know this beautiful and unique, tropical fruit.
A little background . . .
Passion fruit are named for the bloom of the spectacular passion fruit flower, not for the fruit itself.
It’s believed that Spanish missionaries thought parts of the flower resembled different religious symbols.
Chinola means Passion fruit in Dominican Spanish.
How to Tell if Passion Fruit is Ripe
- The fruit should look plump, despite any wrinkles in the skin.
- Choose passion fruit that feels a bit heavy for its size.
- Wrinkled skin is okay, in fact it’s great!
- The wrinkled skin is usually the sign of a very ripe passion fruit. You should actually wait to use them until they’re on the wrinkled side.
To let it ripen when its skin is super smooth, set it out at room temperature. As with most fruits, they should not be refrigerated to ripen.
Once they’re ripe, passion fruit can be stored in the refrigerator for up to a week or so.
What does passion fruit taste like?
- Some people describe the flavor of passion fruit (Chinola) as the true taste and essence of the tropics. I’d have to agree with this. In fact, the scent alone sends my mind to the tropics.
- The pulp of a purple passion fruit is golden yellow and intensely aromatic — the flavor ranges from sweet-tart to very tart.
- Passion fruit pulp is gelatinous and full of small dark seeds.
The tropical scent is truly amazing, and it begins the minute you cut into the fruit.
How to Eat Passion Fruit (Chinola)
This luscious Chinola juice can be used in sweet or savory sauces, in salad dressings, as a marinade, in cocktails, cheesecakes, ice cream, sweet mousses, and more.
It’s also quite common to eat the seeds. They can add crunch to salads and are often used as garnish over a recipe that includes the juice.
And some simply eat everything together, right out of the skin, with a spoon. It’s too tart for me though — I love it mostly in desserts when it’s made a bit sweeter.
Personally, I’m not a huge fan of the seeds — but I’m also not a fan of pomegranate seeds so maybe it’s me.
Where does passion fruit grow?
Thought to be native to southern Brazil, passion fruit is now grown in Australia, California, Florida, New Zealand and Hawaii, and other parts of the tropics.
When is it in season?
Depending on their location, passion fruit are available almost all year, though mainly mid-summer through winter.
A few recipes using Chinola juice (passion fruit recipes):
Okay, now that you know how to eat passion fruit and everything else about it, let’s get to work.
(Please note that some of the passion fruit in the images above aren’t quite wrinkled enough yet — it’ll work for my demo, though.)
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