Saturday, January 5, 2013



Winter is Cherimoya season in my backyard. About a week before Christmas this remarkable and delicious fruit is ready  to pick . I get my really long  fruit picker and look up into the tree tops  for sagging branches   The normal basket size of a picker is barely large enough for some of the giant delicious fruit from my tree .They blend in well , often covered by a tangle of branches and leaves. If I miss them today, I will find them in the driveway tomorrow. Splat,what a waste !
This  creamy white fruit is sweet with about 15% sugar content . My guests  are in awe and get their fill  during breakfast.
The Cherimoya fruit is native to the Andes in Equador, Colombia and Bolivia. The name is a Quechua word meaning "cold seed" as it tolerates colder temperatures and prefers higher altitudes. Makawao is a perfect place with all the right ingredients . Cherimoya was first introduced to Hawaii by Don Fransico Paulo Marin in the late 1700's. The USDA imported seeds from Maderia Portugal in the late 1800.s The immigrants who built my home, Hale Ho'okipa, were from Maderia.  They brought the Isabel grape stock that still grows here, and likely the  Cherimoya seeds . When I first met this tree, I did not understand why it was all scarred up, and learned it was common to shock the tree into bearing fruit..Not my style..I trim the branches constantly, but that is the only hacking that happens under my care.
The blossom has a heavenly fragrance, a bit like apple and pear..shaped like a little downy covered helicopters. When they float to the ground, the air is perfumed. The blossom does a magical pollination ( wind I think) as the flower is both male and female during it's cycle
With the many different varieties that now grow around the world, I think I have identified mine as the Booth with the Impressa fingertip sized depressions in the skin. The seeds are poisonous if crushed and ingested.
This ice creamy yummy fruit that comes from my  tree is another blessing from this season.

May you be able to enjoy fresh food, and remember to support your local growers wherever you are.

A hui hou,


Toby Neal said...

My parents had cherimoya at their house in Princeville, Kauai when I was growing up. So rare to find them, lucky you!

Chris Norberg said...

The Cherimoya is sooo good! I make ice-cream with it, or just a pudding. I remember watching "Chopped" once, and the contestants were cooking it. One of them didn't remove the seeds while cooking (even after being told they were poisonous.) He got told again, and stopped. He should've been disqualified right away for being an idiot. Anyways, thanks for sharing! it's a beautiful fruit from a diverse family.

Erik Blair said...

Amazing, I had no idea of Cherimoya. I've been to Colombia, and didn't experience it there either. I'm going to have Chris Norberg make me some :) Mahalo!

Liza Pierce said...

I love Cherimoya! I just came back from a local farmers market and saw some - planning on going back there to buy (I was in hurry when I stopped by and didn't get a chance to buy it then). Do you have some fruit in your tree now? (I am a little late in doing the blog hop :)

Liza Pierce said...

oppss, my previous comment just disappeared when I logged in on my G+ account! Anyway as I said before, I love Cherimoya. Do you have some more fruit in your tree? I am a little late on doing a blog hop, I should have read this earlier and maybe visited you to have some :) :) :)

Courtney said...

It's a very yummy fruit. I love it in smoothies.