Passion fruit, sometimes called maracuya, is exotically colored -- purple, yellow and even orange -- and has a hollow center filled with seeds. Each seed is surrounded by a juice-filled pulp, and it is this that gives the fruit its flavor -- tart with an underlying sweetness -- and is used to make passion fruit puree. Puree passion fruit at home with a blender, a strainer and a wooden spoon, and use the liquid to make fresh tropical juices, or the puree to flavor ice creams, smoothies or make tropical jam.
- Cut the fruit in half cross-wise and scoop out the seeds and pulp.
- Place the pulp in a blender, along with 1 teaspoon of water per fruit.
- Blend on high for two to three seconds.
- Pour the blended seeds into a fine, metal strainer placed over a mixing bowl.
- Use a wooden spoon to push as much of the pulp through the strainer, leaving the broken seed pieces behind.
If large pieces of the flesh surrounding the seed are not going through the mesh, push down with the back of the wooden spoon.
Gently heating the seeds before blending helps the seeds release their juices more easily. Heat over low heat with 1 teaspoon of water per fruit. For the microwave, heat on high for three seconds per fruit.
While the seeds are edible, they make for an unpleasant texture in purees and juices. However, if the texture of the seeds is not an issue, you can skip straining. Instead, blend the seeds until the desired texture is reached.
Blending passion fruit seeds for too long can lead to tiny, broken seed pieces, which can slip through the mesh of even a fine sieve. Because of this, do not blend for too long.
Pureed passion fruit with or without its seeds can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for three to five days. The pulp also can be frozen in sealed freezer bags or containers with no more than 1/4 inch of head space for two to three months.
Passion fruit puree may be substituted for any tropical fruit puree in a recipe. While it alters the overall flavor, it still gives a sweet taste to the finished product. Common uses for passion fruit puree include:
- Thinned out with water or another fruit juice to make a fresh juice.
- Served as is as a topping for pancakes, crepes, yogurt or ice cream.
- Used as a base for both sweet and savory sauces.
- Used as a juice to flavor custards, puddings and panna cotta.