Botanical Name: Annona squamosa
Family Name : Annonaceae
This fruit, native to the Andes, can be oval, cone-shaped, or heart-shaped; it has a thin, inedible skin with markings that resemble large scales. The skin color varies from brownish-red to green, turning to yellow and almost black as the fruit becomes ripe. Its off-white flesh can be separated into sectors, each with its own shiny black seed, may be granular like a pear, and is sweet, juicy, and flavorful. These fruits can weigh anywhere between 1/2 to 4 1/2 pounds (about 227 to 2,040g). This is considered one of the most flavorful of fruits in the world.
Custard apple is a large genus, comprising over 70 species of trees and shrubs, distributed in tropical countries. Its five or six species, some of which yield edible fruits. Custard apple trees grow abundantly in coastal and lowland areas throughout South and Central America, Mexico, and Africa; they are also cultivated in California, Spain, Australia, the West Indies, and India. The cherimoya is the most popular variety of the custard apple family. Other varieties, which are seen in markets less frequently, include the soursop, sugar-apple or sweetsop, the West Indian bullock's heart, and the pond apple.
Properties of custard apple
Astringent, tonic, anthelmintic, purgative, diuretic and anticancerous.
Forms of Use :- Fruit, root powder, decoction
Food Value of custard apple
Custard apple has a pleasant flavour. It can be made into drinks, and fermented liquor; The pulp contains:-
The unripe fruit, seed, leaf and root are considered medicinal.
Medicinal Uses & benefits
The leaves have been employed in tanning and they yield a blue or black dye. A fiber derived from the young twigs is superior to the bark fiber from Annona squamosa . Custard apple wood is yellow, rather soft, fibrous but durable, moderately close-grained, with a specific gravity of 0.650. It has been used to make yokes for oxen.
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