Mexican food is enticing, spicy and a little bit calorie-laden if I may say so myself. However we don’t have to make it part of our routine weekly menu, but save the recipes...
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Seductive Passion Fruit
The perfume and flavour is definitely exotic and enchanting, sometimes to the point of being intoxicating. From the outside it looks like a dented egg of purplish, yellow or greenish colour. Split it open and you will find a collection of crunchy black seeds covered with a clear, yellow gelatinous flesh. Passion fruit can be eaten raw in fruit salads or as we enjoy it here on the islands, as a flavouring ingredient in drinks.
But its distinctive and assertive flavour brings to life many desserts and savoury dishes. The wonderful sweet and sour taste it imparts seems to combine the flavour of limes and berries yet it is unique in itself. You should be seeing passion fruit in the next few months and it is always great to know what to do with all this lovely fruit when in abundance.
If you’ve got lots of passion fruit to use, you can pulp the fruit and freeze in freezer bags to enjoy all year round. To pulp passion fruit, cut the fruit into half, scoop out the pulp with a teaspoon and pass the pulp through a food mill or a wire mesh strainer.
PASSION FRUIT SORBET
This is a delicious and refreshing fat free dessert.
1 cup passion fruit pulp
2 cups sugar
3 cups water
1 tbsp lime juice
Make sugar syrup by boiling sugar in water. Cool overnight.
Combine passion fruit pulp with limejuice and sugar syrup.
Pour into ice cream freezer and process according to manufacturer’s directions.
Serves 8 to 10
PASSION FRUIT SYRUP
This is a great way to use up excess passion fruit for use in fruit punch and other drinks.
4 cups water
2 lbs sugar
Pulp of eight passion fruits
In a large, non-reactive saucepan combine sugar and water and heat until it begins to boil.
Add the passion fruit pulp and boil for a further 20 minutes until mixture begins to thicken.
Remove from heat, cool and bottle.
Refrigerate and use in place of a regular syrup in fruit juices or punches.
PASSION RUM PUNCH
1 cup fresh lime juice
2 1/2 cups passion fruit syrup (recipe above)
3 cups rum (preferably dark rum)
4 cups water
1/2 tsp grated nutmeg
A few dashes of Aromatic bitters
Maraschino cherries and lime slices for garnish
Combine all the ingredients, pour into glasses with crushed ice and serve with lime and cherry garnishes.
Makes 8 cups
PISTACHIO NUT ICECREAM
1/2 cup milk
1 1/2 cups cream
6 egg yolks
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
2-inch strip of lime peel
Pulp of 8 passion fruits
1/3 cup shelled pistachio nuts, chopped
Lightly toast nuts in a preheated 250F oven just until fragrant, about 3-5 minutes, remove and cool.
In a saucepan heat milk with cream until almost boiling. Cool slightly.
Using an electric beater, beat yolks, lime peel and sugar until pale and thick.
Add some of the milk and cream mixture stirring constantly, remove the lime peel.
Add the egg mixture to the pan with the remaining milk mixture.
Stir over medium heat until lightly thickened, do not boil, or the eggs will curdle.
Cool mixture and stir in passion fruit pulp.
Pour mixture into a metal tray (6 cup capacity); freeze for 3 to 4 hours or until just frozen around the edges.
Transfer mixture to a large bowl, beat with electric beaters until thick and creamy. Add pistachios, mix well and return to freezer.
Freeze overnight or until firm.
1 cup sugar
2 tbsps cornstarch
1 cup evaporated milk
1/2 cup passion fruit puree
1/4 tsp cream of tartar
1 pre-baked pie shell
In a small saucepan combine egg yolks with 3/4 cup sugar and cornstarch, add milk and cook until mixture becomes thick, remove and stir in passion fruit puree, pour into pie shell and chill.
Preheat oven to 325F.
Beat the whites with the remaining sugar and cream of tartar until stiff.
Spoon whites onto pie and bake until lightly browned, about 15 to 20 mins.
Serve with a dollop of whipped cream.
Serves 6 to 8