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Getting to know passionfruit

Fine Cooking Issue 94
Photo: Scott Phillips
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Passionfruit adds an exotic, tropical flavor to summery fruit salads, sorbets, and frozen blender drinks, like daiquiris. Native to South America, these eggplant-color orbs are like inside-out Faberge eggs—their dull, leathery exterior belies the jewel-like seeds and heady, fragrant pulp contained within.

Passionfruits get uglier as they ripen, so choose ones that have wrinkly or dimpled skin and feel heavy for their size. The best indicator of ripeness is the gentle sloshing sound they make when shaken. If you can find only underripe ones, let them sit out at room temperature for a few days to ripen.

When you’re ready to use them, cut them in half with kitchen shears over a fine strainer set in a bowl to catch the juices. Then scoop out the seedy flesh and press it through the strainer. (The seeds are edible, but most recipes call for strained pulp.) A ripe passion fruit yields about 1 tablespoon of pulp with seeds or 1/2 tablespoon strained.


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