Many people shy away from this fruit because of its unusual appearance, but meanwhile annona is juicy, sweet – a real tropical pleasure.
This fruit looks like a green prickly hedgehog, and many shy away from it precisely because of its strange appearance. And in vain: annona (or guanabana, sour cream apple) is a sweet tropical fruit that is even credited with medicinal properties.
There are more than a hundred varieties of this plant, it grows mainly in Central and South America, as well as in Africa. Annona is also grown in Israel, and very successfully.
The fruits of the Israeli annona are usually greenish or yellow, the skin is thin, the shape is most often oval. Sizes are different – in stores most often with a large apple, but in moshavs you can find fruits weighing several kilograms.
Annona consists of lobules, each with a large black inedible bone inside. The fruit is juicy, the pulp is tender, it is recommended to serve it chilled.
- Water 84.72 g
- Carbohydrates14.83 g
- Dietary fiber 0.1 g
- Fat 0.17 g
- Proteins 0.11 g
- Alcohol 0 g
- Cholesterol 0 mg
- Ash 0.08 g
What is it look like
The tree can reach a height of 6 meters, its branches are zigzag, and the crown is always open. The leaves have a dull green tint, the length of each does not exceed 15 centimeters. Sugar tree flowers bloom along the branches. Sometimes in groups, sometimes singly. They are distinguished by a dark red (less often purple) center and yellow petals, which always remain closed even during pollination.
The fruits themselves are quite large and can weigh over 300 grams. The shape is usually round, but sometimes it is oblong and even conical. A characteristic feature of a sugar apple is considered to be a lumpy skin of a pale green color. The pulp of the fruit is fibrous, reminiscent of milk in color. The aroma is pleasant and very bright, as is the taste. There are many oblong seeds inside the annona.
How to eat Annona
An untrained lover of exoticism will find it difficult to understand how to eat a sugar apple. It’s actually pretty simple. It is important to peel the fruits and seeds, as they are inedible, but the pulp, which looks like puree, can be eaten.
Noina, as it is called in Thailand, is easy to break and cut. Moreover, in the countries of Southeast Asia, they like to add it to desserts and various cocktails. The taste of a sugar apple will definitely appeal to those with a sweet tooth, as it is very similar to custard. In addition, annona is very beneficial due to its rich chemical composition.
The composition of a sugar apple contains a number of substances that help to improve the condition of the body. The fruits are also used in dietetics, as they can reduce the feeling of appetite.
Ascorbic acid is the largest substance in the composition of noyna by volume. It is she who is necessary to strengthen the immune system, since it is a source of vitamin C.
The composition also contains thiamine (vitamin B1), which is necessary for the recovery of the body after a serious illness. The substance promotes brain activity, helps to get rid of depression, improves the condition of mentally ill people. It is B1 that everyone who suffers from insomnia needs.
The sugar apple is also rich in riboflavin (vitamin B2), which is essential for the skin and oxidative processes. It is with its help that our body carries out metabolism. This substance is important for emotional people.
There is also niacin (vitamin B3) in the sugar apple, thanks to which the skin epithelium is successfully renewed. This substance is recommended for all diabetics, as well as those suffering from loss of appetite. B3 removes “bad” cholesterol, promotes protein metabolism and strengthens the cardiovascular system.
Noina contains important amino acids, including lysine, which affects the functioning of the brain and intestines. This substance is used to prevent cancer, allows the body to absorb calcium, relieves anxiety.
Contraindications to the use of Annona are quite specific. The fact is that the fruits contain a large number of seeds, substances in which can cause poisoning. It should be noted that sugar apple juice is dangerous if it gets into the eyes and can even cause short-term blindness.
Therefore, doctors recommend not to consume more than 2 fruits per day. It is better for pregnant women to refrain from eating an exotic fruit, as it contains a lot of calcium.
How to choose Annona
Choosing a good sugar apple is easy if you touch it properly. Ripe fruits are always soft and have a significant weight. They must certainly be colored light green, and between the segments of the mature annona, you can see the pulp. In ripe fruits, the skin is thin and easily damaged.
Noina can be stored in the refrigerator, but it is important to remember that its peel quickly turns black. However, the loss of aesthetic appearance does not at all affect the taste. The fruits retain their beneficial properties well for a week and remain absolutely edible. Interestingly, unripe fruits are usually chosen for sale, because they will still ripen after a while.
Enthusiasts prefer to grow a sugar apple at home. If you are one of those, remember a few important conditions:
- due to the fact that noina is not an evergreen tree, it needs to shed its leaves in winter;
- plant seeds are sown in winter or already at the onset of spring;
- for a tree, it is necessary to limit watering at the moment when it has already dropped some of the leaves, and when it gets rid of them completely, watering must be abandoned;
- store seeds in a cool and dark place;
- comfortable temperature regime – 25-30 degrees, therefore it is recommended to grow it directly on the windowsill;
- from the moment of planting the seeds to the fruiting period, you will have to wait about 3 years;
- the sugar apple needs pollination, so be sure to shake the pollen off it in a small bag in the morning, and by lunchtime, use a thin brush to apply the same pollen to the pistils;
- Annona can grow in arid conditions and poor alkaline soil. She prefers diffused light;
- the best species for growing at home are Muricata and Squamosa, with the former being considered completely unpretentious.
- First of all, the sugar apple is widely used in medicine in the countries of Southeast Asia and India.
- Indian doctors recommend applying the pulp to the wounds, which reduces inflammation and has a healing effect.
- The pulp also helps with burns.
- In South America, the sugar apple is used to reduce the harmful effects of malaria on the body. A special decoction is made from it, which reduces the harmful effects of fever.
- The leaves of the plant can be used to make a tincture that is rubbed into the skin to prevent the development of rheumatism.
- Noina has found application in other areas as well. For example, its seeds are used to make soap, which is due to the high content of oils (up to 50% of the total weight of the fruit).
- The oil can also be used for cooking.
- The largest fruits grow on the island of Lanta.
- Various varieties of sugar apples are often involved in various studies looking for a cure for diseases such as cancer and Parkinson’s syndrome.
Annona is an amazing fruit, the properties of which have not yet been fully understood. Its taste is often difficult to describe, but we can say for sure that having tasted such a delicacy once, you can never forget about this moment.
Soothing tea made from annona murikat leaves.
• Annona Muricata leaves
- Bring water to a boil.
- Thoroughly rinse the annona muricata leaves and place them in a clean teapot or cup.
- Pour boiling water over the leaves, using approximately 3 leaves per cup.
- Close the kettle and let it brew for 5-10 minutes.
- Remove the leaves.
- Add sugar and lemon slice to taste.
This tea is a pleasant soothing drink that will help your children sleep soundly. It can be used as a sedative and also has a cooling effect.