Lucuma has been grown in the Peruvian highlands since 200 A.D. when the ancient Moche people were the first to discover the taste of this unique caramel sweet fruit. The fruit had both nutritious and symbolic value since it was an important source of food and during times religious rituals were sacrificed against fertility problems. Images of lucuma have been found on ceramics from archaeological excavations, and it was once known as "the gold of the Incas". The sweet-tasting fruit is now popular in Central and South America and is grown in Peru, Ecuador, Chile and parts of Bolivia. Lucuma is added to ice cream, pies, cakes, cookies and other sweet desserts and provides an exotic, syrupy taste. In Peru, lucuma is the most eaten ice cream flavour, more popular than chocolate. Because this fruit is so popular among Peruvians there are a total of 26 villages named after it - 20 called 'Lucuma' and 6 called 'Lucuma'. The lucuma tree grows best at an altitude between 4500 and 10,000 meters. Although it can withstand drought well, it is very sensitive to frost. It needs high humidity to produce an optimal fruit yield. Lucuma trees start producing fruit after 5 years, and each tree produces up to 500 fruits per year. The large yellow-brown cone-shaped fruits can grow up to 10 cm long and weigh one kilo each.
Processing of LUCUMA
Our lucuma is grown on orchards in Peru. The evergreen trees grow up to 15 meters high and have a straight, cylindrical trunk and shiny oval leaves. The greenish-yellow flowers are produced throughout the year, and about 9 months after being pollinated, fruits will emerge. The lucuma tree bears fruit all year round, but the main harvest takes place in spring between January and April. When the fruit falls out of the lucuma tree it is not ripe yet and the pulp is too hard to be edible. The fruit should be stored under hay until the bitter white latex breaks down and the pulp becomes softer, but even when the fruit is ripe the flesh remains relatively firm. The texture is similar to pumpkin. Lucumas can be eaten raw, but they are usually cooked and mixed with other foods to add flavour and sweetness to the dish. To produce lucuma powder, the ripe fruits are thoroughly washed and cut into small pieces that are completely dehydrated. The temperature remains below 45°C. The dried fruit is then carefully milled to a fine powder, which can be kept for up to 2 years while retaining its nutty caramel flavour. Our lucuma powder is thoroughly tested for microbial activity to ensure that the final product is as pure and natural as possible.
SEAL HEALTH OF LUCUCMA POWER
Lucuma powder can be added to a variety of foods to improve both taste and texture. The natural sweetness of this product means that it can replace sugar. Lucuma powder has a low GI (glycemic index) and therefore the energy is slowly released. Lucuma is a completely natural sweetener and a good alternative to refined sugar. It is also rich in fibre.
Our lucuma powder can be included in a dessert recipe and will add a buttery, sweet taste to cakes, biscuits and pies without the need for extra sugar. The caramel-coloured powder is versatile and easy to use, just mix it with any food that would benefit from the maple rich natural fruit flavour. Our Lucuma is available with a certificate..