Of all the so-called superfoods – foods rich in nutrients and antioxidants that are believed to fight against aging – few receive more awards than the family of berries. From the humble blueberries to their exotic cousins from distant climates, the berries have overtaken other super fruits to take a solid and improved position. Of course, orange fruits and green leafy vegetables have their place, but berries seem to have become the stars of the show.
O day we are talking in account the freeze-dried acerola. For that we must know what an acerola is; it is basically a fruit and the color of the fruit is bright red and rarely can be seen yellow or orange. Very similar to cherry can be confused with other fruits. You will see in the photos of the definition page acerola how to distinguish the one from the cherry. We will try the acerola as edible fruit, the way to consume it, the cultivation of acerola and its conservation
Description – Freeze dried acerola:
Acerola is a large, dense shrub or small tree that reaches up to 20 feet (6 m) in height and equal in width, with more or less erect or drooping branches, minutely pubescent, a short trunk and 4 inches (10 cm) ) diameter. Its leaves are perennial, elliptical, oblong, obovate, or narrowly oblanceolate, somewhat undulating, 3/4 to 2 3/4 inches (2-7 cm) long and 3/8 to 1 5/8 inches (9.5- 40 mm) wide, obtuse or rounded at the apex , acute or acuminate at the base, having white hairs, silky and irritating when very young, hairless, dark green and bright when mature. The flowers are sessile or on the top of a short peduncle, with 5 petals like pink or lavender fringe, in the shape of a spoon. The fruits, grow alone or in groups of 2 or 3 in the axils of the leaves, are oblates to round, like the real cherry, but with more or less obvious lobes; 1/2 to 1 inch (1.25-2.5 cm) wide, with thin skin of bright red color, and pulp of orange color, very juicy, acidic or sub-acidic. It contains 3 small rounded seeds which have 2 large and 1 small fluted wings, thus forming what is generally considered a triangular stone and cornerstone nucleus, yellowish, inedible.
Acerola edible fruit:
Acerola is an edible fruit with a soft and juicy pulp. Something sweet, his taste is quite acid. As we will see later on the fresh state this fruit has particular properties and not only because of the high content of vitamin C. Unfortunately acerola is very poorly preserved and is difficult to find in European markets.
Consumption Acerola- Freeze dried acerola:
Because of this acidity, its consumption as a dessert or fresh fruit is not very important for the world and it is still limited. Its best use is achieved with manufactured preparations, juices, jams, or ice cream. The juice acerola is a very popular drink in Brazil. However, it becomes more considered appreciation for its high content of vitamin C. This large amount of vitamin C that few fruits have made it develops many products made from acerola as nutritional supplements.
Cultivation of Acerola:
Acerola can be classified as a tropical and subtropical species with little resistance to cold. It needs annual temperatures between 10 and 30 degrees. In general, it does not support temperatures under 7 degrees in long periods. The plant needs luminosity and protection from rain and cold. The acerola cherry grows in warm areas like California, Florida, South Texas, Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean. It is also cultivated in some areas of Southeast Asia and South America, especially Brazil. They are fast growing and can be harvested 3 times a year giving a high yield to the tree. The acerola plant can be grown in any season, the rainy being the most effective. They can be planted at distances less than 5 meters or much less in close (1m).
Conservation of acerola- Freeze dried acerola:
The acerola is deteriorating rapidly. You can already see differences in appearance and quality between three and four hours after being picked up from the tree. It has to be put quickly in the process of refrigeration because 3 to 5 days later it begins to ferment what leaves it without possible use. In conclusion, highly perishable, acerola cannot be stored for more than 3 days at room temperature (22 °). Because of this fragility, it needs to be frozen quickly in order to be stored.
Freeze dried acerola use as food:
Barbados cherries are eaten fresh, especially by children. For use as a dessert, they are delicious simply stewed with the amount of sugar you want to modify the acidity of the available types. When they are eaten, the seeds are separated from the pulp in the mouth and returned with the spoon to the plate. Many may think that it is a nuisance, but it is compensated by the pleasure of enjoying the juice and the taste of the pulp. Otherwise, the cooked fruits are strained to remove the seeds and the resulting sauce or mash can be used as a cover or filling in cakes, puddings, ice cream or sliced bananas, or used in other culinary products. Commercially the prepared puree is dried or frozen for future use. The fresh juice avoids the darkening of banana slices in fruit salads. It can be used for gelatin desserts, punch, or sorbets, and has been added as an ascorbic acid supplement to the juices of other fruits. The juice was dried and pulverized commercially in Puerto Rico for a decade until the cost of production caused the closure of the factory.
Fruits can be made in syrup or, adding pectin, an excellent jelly, jam, or other preserves. When cooking, the bright red color changes to brownish red. The process of pasteurization in the canning of the juice changes the color to red-orange or yellow, and the packaging in cans produces, even more, the deterioration of color. Enamel coated can preserve color better.