Living in the San Diego area - we can grow passionfruit vines, which are flowering tropical vines known as passiflora. They produce an amazing amount of passionfruit, and they are great cover for bare walls. Before we moved to San Diego - we rented a house that had passionfruit vines in the backyard, and we thought it was so exotic and loved picking them and scooping out the flesh. We vowed that one day we would plant our own passionfruit vines.
When we moved into our current house - the backyard needed a lot of love and there was a wall that was just bare and boring - so my hubby said, "lets plant passionfruit vines!" That bare wall transformed into a lush green wall that produces these cool purple flowers and every year we get several baskets full of passionfruit.
Passionfruit are low glycemic and a study found that they may improve insulin sensitivity and metabolism. They contain fiber, potassium, magnesium, vitamins A & C, and antioxidants. The fruit start out green, but as they ripen, they turn a burgundy purple color, and the more wrinkly they get - the better. But if they get black or moldy - discard them, they have gone past ripe. Passionfruit are slightly tart and slightly sweet, and full of edible seeds - you can eat it right out of the fruit, stir it into yogurt, swirl into tea, or stir into a margarita. You can also freeze the juice into little ice cube trays.
If you live in a tropical climate, and have a bare wall - consider planting passionfruit vines!
Oddly - persons with a latex allergy, may have an allergy to passionfruit.
If you want a special treat - make some passionfruit curd. I like to stir a spoonful of passionfruit curd into organic unsweetened yogurt, and I also make this delicious Tropical Mango Tart with it. I adjusted this recipe to cut the sugar content by over 50%.
Passionfruit Curd Recipe:
· 1/2 cup of passionfruit juice/pulp (approx. 8-10 ripe passionfruit), most of the seeds removed (see below)
· 2 organic eggs, 2 egg yolks
· 3 Tablespoons of organic cane sugar
· 3 teaspoons of monk fruit powder (I use Lakinto organic brand)
· 1/8 tsp of salt (use less/just a pinch if using salted butter)
· 1 tsp of fresh lemon juice
· 4 Tbs. unsalted cold butter
· 1 tsp vanilla extract
Cut the passionfruit in half and scoop out the flesh and seeds.
Put the juice and seeds into a blender and give it a few spins - this helps to separate out the seeds. Pour it through a strainer (reserving a tablespoon or two of seeds to add back in later).
Put the passionfruit juice into a saucepan, and gently warm over low-medium heat until just starting to slightly bubble, take off heat.
In a separate bowl, whisk up the eggs and egg yolks - to avoid cooking the eggs when you add in the warm passionfruit juice, you will need to temper the eggs, by adding in the warm passionfruit juice very slowly, while continually whisking (I add it in a spoonful at a time initially - after about 10 spoonfuls, I will slowly drizzle in the rest - always while whisking. If you see any cooked egg pieces, just strain it before putting back into saucepan.
Now add in the the sugar, lemon, salt, vanilla, monk fruit, and if you want to add in any of the seeds back in (i like to add in about 1-2 Tablespoons.
Cook on a low simmer while whisking for a few minutes, and then add in the cold butter one Tablespoon at a time, continuing to whisk. It should thicken nicely.
Take off heat, and allow to cool completely before putting into a glass jar. Store in refrigerator up to 1 week.
Don't have passionfruit? This will work with fresh lemon juice as well - which is probably the most common fruit for a curd actually.