Custard apple (Annona squamosa) heart-shaped fruit which has a sweet taste
Sugar-apple -Custard Apple – is rich in nutrients and delicious in taste.
Custard apples contain anti-oxidants like Vitamin C, which helps to fight free radicals in our body. These are also rich in potassium and magnesium, which protect us from cardiac diseases.
The term custard apple is commonly applied to all the Anona species producing edible fruits. These are very delicious fruits. Custard apples are known for their wide adaptability to soil and climatic conditions and freedom from pests and diseases. They are widely grown in tropical and subtropical parts of the world. The commercial plantation of custard apple is not yet established and usually finds a place only in home gardens..
Custard Apple Origin and History
All anonaceous fruits are indigenous to tropical America. They spread to different parts of the world after the discovery of the continent. It is thought that few species may be native to Africa. According to Baily Anon Squamosa is a native of West Indies and South America while Anon cherimola has its origin in the mountains of Ecuador and Peru. The sculptural designs at Ajanta and Elllora and the mention of custard apple in the Sanskrit literature, prove that it has been in India since very old times. After being introduced by the Portuguese the fruits dispersed quickly and for acclimatised throughout south Asia
Importance and Uses – custard apple medicinal values,health properties,culinary uses and commercial status
The custard apple are rich source of carbohydrates ,protein, fibre, minerals like calcium, phosphorus and Iron and Vitamin C. They are considered good energy source with the value of 104 Kcal.Vitamin A source in the fruit help for eyes,hair and skin
Custard apple are mostly consumed as table fruits.. They can be preserved as jam, jelly and are also used in ice-creams, and other milk products. Baked fruits are commonly eaten in Andhra Pradesh. . The edible portion of fruit is creamy, granular with an excellent blend of sweetness and acidity.
The immature fruits, seeds, leaves and roots are known for their medicinal use in Ayurveda and Yunani system. The seeds contain about 30 percent oil which can be used in soap and paint industry. The seeds contains nitrogen thus can be sued as manure
How to purchase /store custard apple
This is a fragile exotic fruit that get damaged easily if handled improperly.Some guideline to purchase this fruit
- Select firm and fresh fruit
- Avoid fruit that displays signs of turning black
- Avoid small and dark green (premature) fresh fruit
- Store unripe custard apples at room temperature. As soon as ripe (soft), you can keep them in the fridge for approximately two days.