Cherimoya from A to Z: 26 Things to Know

Cherimoya from A to Z: 26 Things to Know


A list of cherimoya facts and figures you can't miss: varieties, nutritional facts and how to enjoy this tropical fruit at its best.

Annona cherimola. is the scientific name of this fruit bearing plant.

Banana. How can we describe the taste of cherimoya? Try this: a unique mix of banana and pineapple, maybe with a touch of strawberry, pear, papaya and peach. Like the banana, its taste varies a great deal according to how mature the fruit is.

Custard Apple. This is another name given to the cherimoya.

Diet. An ideal fruit for those wishing to control their appetite, since it has a filling effect, is nutritious and protein-rich.

Ecuador. Together with Peru, Ecuador is the homeland of this fruit which can only be farmed in particular climatic and environmental conditions.

Fino de Jete. A variety of cherimoya that comes from Malaga and Granada, in Southern Spain, which has been awarded European PDO status (Protected Designation of Origin). It has a delicious and slightly sour taste.

García. Michelin starred and multi awarded Andalusian chef Dani Garcia is a cherimoya fan: its appealing characteristics and that touch of sourness make it a perfect ingredient for use in sweet and savoury recipes – or so he claims.

Heart. The fruit of love! Cherimoya is heart shaped. A unique characteristic…

Ice-cream. An ice-cream that has no need for ice-cream! Cherimoya is used for making desserts, comprising ice-creams and sorbets but, if you want to eat a delicious bowl of fruit, just chill a perfectly ripened cherimoya and then cut it in half and enjoy its creamy flesh with a teaspoon, taking care to avoid its shiny black poisonous seeds. You will realise why cherimoya has also been dubbed the “Ice-cream fruit”.

Jamaica. Cherimoya flowers are aromatic. In Jamaica, they are used as snuff!

Keep cool! Like the avocado, cherimoya can take a long time to ripen but once ripe, it quickly deteriorates. However, its flesh may be frozen to keep it fresh and delicious for longer periods.

Lima. A very sweet, delicious and typical dessert of the Peruvian capital, Suspiro Limeño (or Suspiro de limeña) is made from manjar blanco (the recipe containing condensed milk similar to dulche de leche) and meringue. Some chefs prepare a particularly gourmet version with one layer of delicate white cherimoya flesh.

Milkshake. Cherimoya, milk and/or yogurt and ice: a popular Latin American milkshake to which other ingredients may be added, such as banana and coconut.

Nutmeg. A spice that teams up perfectly with cherimoya, possibly in combination with vanilla (or vanilla ice-cream!).

Orange. The pairing with orange is extremely palatable but these two fruits are closely related for another reason: in the Sierra Nevada mountains of Andalusia in Southern Spain, a plague destroyed the orange groves in the 40’s and 50’s of the last century. They were replaced with cherimoya trees and, since then, the region has boasted the largest cultivations of this fruit on European soil.

Pulp. Creamy and sweet, fleshy and juicy, aromatic and slightly sour, the white pulp of this fruit has a combination of consistency and taste you will not forget in a hurry.

Quechua. The name “cherimoya” derives from the Andean Quechua language: “chirimuya” means “seeds of cold”, indicating that this plant grows in subtropical areas but at high altitudes.

Reggio Calabria. In this city and its coastal area, located on the toe of the Italian boot, the exotic cherimoya fruit has been grown since 1797, and it has even obtained the De.Co. Italian label of municipal origin.

Sugar apple. The “scaly” cousin of the cherimoya, it also belongs to the Annona family. The artificial cross between these two fruits has produced a hybrid called “atemoia”.

Twain. Marc Twain, author of The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, declared that the cherimoya is “The most delicious fruit known to man”.

Unique. A truly unique fruit: a single cherimoya tree can contemporarily yield fruits whose aroma and internal and external consistencies are completely different.

X-rated? This fruit is thought to have aphrodisiac powers.

Whaley. Just one of the many varieties of this fruit which, in this case comes from Hollywood: California is the North American state producing the largest quantity of cherimoya fruit.

Vitamins. One of the qualities of this fruit is to be rich in minerals qnd antioxidants, not to mention vitamins, comprising those of the vitamin B group.

Yeah! Some scientific studies have demonstrated – at least on mice – what many populations, the Mexicans in particular, have known and applied in their home cures for centuries: the power of this fruit to combat depression, stress and melancholy.

Zany. With its reptilian skin and buttery flesh, studded heart, extreme sweetness and poisonous seeds: cherimoya is certainly one of the zaniest fruits on the planet…