Jamaican Soursop (Sour sop) is used to make a great drink and an ice cream recipe.
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Jamaican Food - Soursop (Sour sop)

Soursop (Sour sop) Great For Jamaican Recipes

A member of the custard apple/ atemoya family. The Jamaican soursop is the largest of this Jamaican soursop fruit family sold in Jamaican markets. Jamaican soursop can weigh up to one kilogram per Jamaican soursop fruit, the flesh is white compared to the yellow flesh of the custard apple, and the skin is spiky rather than knobby. The taste, as the name implies, is not sweet but astringent. Of the 60 or more species of the genus Annona, family Annonaceae, the Jamaican soursop is the most tropical, the largest-Jamaican soursop fruited, and the only one lending itself well to preserving and processing. The Jamaican Jamaican soursop belongs to the genus annonaceae and comprises about 150 species. The small tree in Jamaica is no more than 20 feet tall; the Jamaican soursop leaves are leathery, very dark and shiny green. They have a pungent odor when crushed. The tree has larger yellow flowers. Guanabana Jamaican soursop fruit is oblong or somewhat curved with a length of 13 inch and a weight of up to 8 pound. The Jamaican Jamaican soursop fruit has 40 - to 100 black seeds. A well-known Jamaican soursop fruit throughout much of the world, the Jamaican soursop's delicious white Jamaican soursop pulp, with tones of Jamaican soursop fruit candy and smooth cream is commonplace in tropical markets, but is rarely found fresh anywhere else. Inside its thin, leathery, green flesh is a large mass of creamy Jamaican soursop pulp, usually intermixed with 50-100 black seeds.

The Mountain Jamaican soursop a native of Central and South America is similar to the Jamaican Jamaican soursop but with sour to bitter flavored flesh. Some Jamaican Jamaican soursop varieties produce higher quality Jamaican soursop fruit. The Jamaican Jamaican soursop fruit is nearly round, up to 6 inches diameter with dark green skin studded with short spikes and orange-yellow flesh. Mountain Jamaican soursops are considered edible, but mediocre. The Jamaican soursop is said to be a native Jamaican soursop fruit of tropical North and South America. Belonging to the family Annonaceae which includes about 100 species of trees and shrubs. The Jamaican soursop is among the four (4) best known species that produce edible Jamaican soursop fruits. The other species are sweetsop, custard apple and cherimoya. It is know by the name guanabana, corrosol, suirsaak and other in different tropical parts of the world. The Jamaican soursop tree is a small evergreen usually growing from 5 to 9m (15 - 30 ft) high. The simple oval Jamaican soursop leaves are leathery, glossy and dark green in color. They have a characteristic pungent odor when crushed.

In the last five (5) years (1995-2000), approximately, 1700 kg of Jamaican soursop was exported from the island as fresh Jamaican soursop fruits to the United States of America, Canada and other Caribbean islands. In addition, small volumes are now being used in the Jamaican soursop fruit juice and puree industry in the making of ice cream and other frozen delicacies, also jams and jellies. With the further growth of the Agro-industry and the new awareness of the consumer to the use of natural juices and their products, the demand for the Jamaican soursop fruit has increased and therefore the need for the small farmers to improve their existing cultivation and increase the acreage under production. Some segments contain oval, smooth, hard, black seeds which are toxic. The Jamaican soursop tree bears Jamaican soursop fruit continuously after 3-4 years of age with little care and produces several crops throughout the year. The creamy, aromatic Jamaican soursop pulp is used in ice cream and as a juice it is rich in vitamin B and C.

The Jamaican soursop is abundant in Jamaica and across the West Indies. It is today found in Bermuda and the Bahamas, and both wild and cultivated, from sea-level to an altitude of 3,500 ft (1,150 m) throughout the West Indies and from southern Mexico to Peru and Argentina. It was one of the first Jamaican soursop fruit trees carried from America to the Old World Tropics where it has become widely distributed from southeastern China to Australia and the warm lowlands of eastern and western Africa.

It is common in the markets of Jamaica. Very large, symmetrical Jamaican soursop fruits have been seen on sale in West Indies and the Jamaican soursop became well established at an early date in the Pacific Islands. The tree has been raised successfully but has never Jamaican soursop fruited in the Middle East. In Jamaica, the Jamaican soursop has been grown to a limited extent for possibly 110 years.

In regions where sweet Jamaican soursop fruits are preferred, as in Negril and Ocho Rios, the Jamaican soursop has not enjoyed great popularity. It is grown only to a limited extent in other countries.

However, in the East Indies it has been acclaimed one of the best local Jamaican soursop fruits. In Honolulu, the Jamaican soursop fruit is occasionally sold but the demand exceeds the supply. The Jamaican soursop is one of the most abundant Jamaican soursop fruits in the Dominican Republic and one of the most popular in Cuba, Puerto Rico, the Bahamas, Colombia and northeastern Brazil. In 1887, Cuban and Jamaican Jamaican soursops were selling in Key West, Florida, at 10 to 50 cents a piece.

This small evergreen is a native to tropical America.  It is an important Jamaican soursop fruit in Puerto Rico and other tropical American areas.  It is too tender and cold-sensitive for all except the warmest parts of Florida.  The Jamaican soursop fruits are quite large, up to 5 pounds, and heart shaped.  The skin is dark green when mature and smooth with numerous fleshy spines on the surface.  The interior flesh is white, with soft cottony strands that contain many dark brown flattened seeds about 3/4 inch long.  The seeds are toxic.

The island of Grenada produces particularly large and perfect Jamaican soursops and regularly delivers them by boat to the market of Port-of Spain because of the shortage in Trinidad. In Jamaica, where the Jamaican soursop is generally large, well-formed and of high quality, this is one of the 14 tropical Jamaican soursop fruits recommended by the Jamaican planters and farmers for large-scale planting and marketing. Jamaican soursops produced in small plots, none over 5 acres (2.27 ha), throughout Venezuela supply the processing plants where the frozen concentrate is packed in 6 oz (170 g) cans. In 1968, 2,266 tons (936 MT) of juice were processed in Venezuela. The strained Jamaican soursop pulp is also preserved commercially in Costa Rica. There are a few commercial Jamaican soursop plantations near the south coast of Puerto Rico and several processing factories. In 1977, the Puerto Rican crop totaled 219,538 lbs (99,790 kg).

The Jamaican soursop tree is low-branching and bushy but slender because of its upturned limbs, and reaches a height of 25 or 30 ft (7.5-9 m). Young branch lets are rusty-hairy. The alodorous Jamaican soursop leaves, normally evergreen, are alternate, smooth, glossy, dark green on the upper surface, lighter beneath; oblong, elliptic or narrow obviate, pointed at both ends, 2 1/2 to 8 in (6.25-20 cm) long and 1 to 2 1/2 in (2.5-6.25 cm) wide. The flowers, which are borne singly, may emerge anywhere on the trunk, branches or twigs. They are short stalked, 1 1/2 to 2 in (4 5 cm) long, plump, and triangular-conical, the 3 fleshy, slightly spreading, outer petals yellow-green, the 3 close-set inner petals pale-yellow.

The Jamaican soursop fruit is more or less oval or heart-shaped, some times irregular, lopsided or curved, due to improper carper development or insect injury. The size ranges from 4 to 12 in (10-30 cm) long and up to 6 in (15 cm) in width and the weight may be up to 10 or 15 lbs (4.5-6.8 kg). The Jamaican soursop fruit is compound and covered with a reticulated, leathery-appearing but tender, inedible, bitter skin from which protrude few or many stubby, or more elongated and curved, soft, pliable "spines". The tips break off easily when the Jamaican soursop fruit is fully ripe. The skin is dark-green in the immature Jamaican soursop fruit, becoming slightly yellowish-green before the mature Jamaican soursop fruit is soft to the touch. Its inner surface is cream-colored and granular and separates easily from the mass of snow-white, fibrous, juicy segments—much like flakes of raw fish—surrounding the central, soft-pithy core. In aroma, the Jamaican soursop pulp is somewhat pineapple-like, but its musky, sub acid to acid flavor is unique. Most of the closely-packed segments are seedless. In each fertile segment there is a single oval, smooth, hard, black seed, l/2 to 3/4 in (1.25-2 cm) long; and a large Jamaican soursop fruit may contain from a few dozen to 200 or more seeds.

In Jamaica, the wide range of forms and types of seedling Jamaican soursops are roughly divided into 3 general classifications: sweet, sub acid, and acid; then subdivided as round, heart-shaped, oblong or angular; and finally classed according to flesh consistency which varies from soft and juicy to firm and comparatively dry. There are cataloged 14 different types of Jamaican soursops in Jamaica. In El Salvador, 2 types of Jamaican soursops are distinguished: guanaba azucaron (sweet) eaten raw and used for drinks; and very sour acid, used only for drinks.

In the Dominican Republic, the sweet Jamaican soursop is most sought after. The term "sweet" is used in a relative sense to indicate low acidity. A medium-sized, yellow-green Jamaican soursop called fibreless has been vegetative propagated at the Agricultural Experiment Station at Santiago de las Vegas, Cuba. The foliage of this superior clone is distinctly bluish-green.

The Jamaican Jamaican soursop is truly tropical. Young Jamaican soursop trees in exposed places in Mandeville are killed by only a few degrees of cold. The trees that survive to Jamaican soursop fruiting age on the mainland are in protected situations, close to the south side of a house and sometimes near a source of heat. Even so, there will be temporary defoliation and interruption of Jamaican soursop fruiting when the temperature drops to near freezing. In Jamaica, where the tropical breadfruit thrives, the Jamaican Jamaican soursop is perfectly at home. The Jamaican Jamaican soursop tree is said to prefer an altitude between 800 and 1,000 ft (244300 m), with moderate humidity, plenty of sun and shelter from strong winds. Generally a small-medium tree to 8m/25ft. Will not survive outside anywhere in the areas are extremely cold. Jamaican Jamaican soursop trees require much warmth and humidity, lots of water, and will be killed by temperatures below 32ûF/0ûC. In the tropics, Jamaican soursops are grown from sea level to 1000m, particularly in humid regions where the tree grows particularly well. Jamaican soursops cannot tolerate standing water, and its roots are shallow, so it does not require a very deep soil base.

Best growth is achieved in deep, rich, well-drained, semi-dry soil, but the Jamaican soursop tree can be and is commonly grown in acid and sandy soil, and in the porous, oolitic limestone of South Florida and the Bahamas Islands.

Despite many named cultivars, Jamaican Jamaican soursops are commonly grown from seed. Jamaican Jamaican soursop trees can also be propagated by grafting and budding methods. Grafting of cherimoya and sugar apple trees (and vice versa) onto Jamaican soursop has thus far been unsuccessful. Jamaican soursop seeds can be stored for several months before planting. Germination of seeds usually takes three weeks, but under sub-optimal conditions can be delayed for up to 2-3 months. Seedlings of 6-9 month age are usually large enough to be set out in the field, or used as rootstocks for grafting. Native to the West Indies, today the Jamaican Jamaican soursop has spread throughout the humid tropics and is widely grown commercially. The Jamaican soursop is usually grown from seeds. They should be sown in flats or containers and kept moist and shaded. Germination takes from 15 to 30 days. Selected types can be reproduced by cuttings or by shield-budding. Jamaican soursop seedlings are generally the best stock for propagation, though grafting onto custard apple, the mountain Jamaican soursop, or pond apple is usually successful. The pond apple has a dwarfing effect.

In ordinary practice, Jamaican Jamaican soursop seedlings, when 1 ft (30 cm) or more in height are set out in the field at the beginning of the rainy season and spaced 12 to 15 ft (3.65-4.5 m) apart, though 25 ft (7.5 m) each way has been suggested. A spacing of 20 x 25 ft (6x7.5 m) allows 87 trees per acre (215/ha). Close-spacing, 8 x 8 ft (2.4x2.4 m) is thought sufficient for small gardens in Jamaica. The Jamaican Jamaican soursop tree grows rapidly and begins to bear in 3 to 5 years. Well-watered trees have attained 15 to 18 ft (4.5-5.5 m) in 6 to 7 years. Mulching is recommended to avoid dehydration of the shallow, fibrous root system during dry, hot weather. If in too dry a situation, the tree will cast off all of its old Jamaican soursop leaves before new ones appear. A fertilizer mixture containing 10% phosphoric acid, 10% potash and 3% nitrogen has been advocated in Jamaica. But excellent results have been obtained in Hawaii with quarterly applications of 10-10-10 N P K—1\2 lb (.225 kg) per tree the first year, 1 lb (.45 kg)/tree the 2nd year, 3 lbs (1.36 kg)/tree the 3rd year and thereafter.

The Jamaican Jamaican soursop tends to flower and Jamaican soursop fruit more or less continuously, but in every growing area there is a principal season of ripening. In Puerto Rico, this is from March to June or September; in Queensland, it begins in April; in southern India, Mexico and Florida, it extends from June to September; in the Jamaica, it continues through October. In Hawaii, the early crop occurs from January to April; midseason crop, June to August, with peak in July; and there is a late crop in October or November.

The Jamaican Jamaican soursop fruit is picked when full grown and still firm but slightly yellow-green. If allowed to soften on the tree, it will fall and crush. It is easily bruised and punctured and must be handled with care. Firm Jamaican soursop fruits are held a few days at room temperature. When eating ripe, they are soft enough to yield to the slight pressure of one's thumb. Having reached this stage, the Jamaican soursop fruit can be held 2 or 3 days longer in a refrigerator. The skin will blacken and become unsightly while the flesh is still unspoiled and usable. Studies of the ripening process in Hawaii have determined that the optimum stage for eating is 5 to 6 days after harvest, at the peak of ethylene production. Thereafter, the flavor is less pronounced and a faint off odor develops. In Venezuela, the chief handicap in commercial processing is that the Jamaican sour sop fruits stored on racks in a cool shed must be gone over every day to select those that are ripe and ready for juice extraction. The Jamaican Jamaican soursop, unfortunately, is a shy-bearer, the usual crop being 12 to 20 or 24 Jamaican sour sop fruits per tree.

The Jamaican Jamaican soursop fruit is picked when fully developed and still firm but lack-luster and may be slightly brown-green in color. In addition, optimum maturity is determined by the spacing of the spines on the surface of the Jamaican Jamaican soursop fruit. These spines become further and further apart as growth occurs. It has been found that when approximately 6-7 spines span 12 cm², the Jamaican sour sop fruit can be considered to be mature.

Jamaican Jamaican sour sop fruits must be reaped early in the morning or late evening to prevent the build-up of field heat. Jamaican soursop fruits are harvested using knives and then lowered to the ground. Jamaican soursop should never be knocked from the Jamaican soursop tree. Jamaican soursop fruits should not be allowed to ripen or become soft on the trees as they will fall and crush. The Jamaican Jamaican sour sop fruit must be handled with care to avoid bruising.

All damaged Jamaican soursop fruits must be removed as these might become sources of ethylene gas which will increase the rate of ripening. All immature Jamaican soursop fruits should also be removed as due to their high respiration rate will affect the rate of ripening of the mature Jamaican soursop fruits. Jamaican soursop can be graded based on shape and size to enhance packaging and presentation. Pre-cooling is necessary due to the high respiration rate of the Jamaican sour sop fruit.

The Jamaican Jamaican soursop should be collected carefully into shallow carton boxes or lined wooden boxes and baskets to prevent physical damage. Also the Jamaican soursop fruits should be separated from each other by use of soft material. Be careful in the used of dried grass and banana Jamaican soursop leaves as these may contain pieces of sticks or prickles and insects which can damage the Jamaican sours op fruits. The use of bags and sacks is prohibited as it results in bruising and mechanical damage to the Jamaican sour sop fruits.

A mature Jamaican Jamaican sour sop fruit will store for a few days (2-3) at room temperature. This time is further enhanced if the Jamaican soursop fruits are stored on racks in a cool shed as the reduced temperature of the environment will reduce the rate of ripening. When storing the Jamaican Jamaican soursop it must be free from adhering soil, foreign matter or chemical residue. The Jamaican soursop should show no signs of shriveling. The Jamaican soursop fruit should be firm, mature and sound without physical damage. Select Jamaican soursop fruits that are soft and ripe.  Peel and cut lengthwise through center and remove all cores.  Remove seeds from white flesh.  Puree the white flesh and add 1 cup of sugar to 6 cups of puree.  Package in airtight containers, label and freeze at 0 degrees.  The puree which will be slightly thick, and is excellent in beverages, sherbet and ice cream.  The flavor blends well with bananas and pineapple.  It is most desirable to prepare as a puree, the sliced Jamaican soursop fruit when frozen is coarse in texture.

The principal pest of the Jamaican Jamaican soursop is the mealy bug which may occur in masses on the Jamaican sour sop fruits. The mealy bug is a common pest also in the West Indies, where the tree is often infested with scale insects. Sometimes it may be infected by a lace-wing bug. The Jamaican Jamaican sour sop fruit is subject to attack by Jamaican sour sop fruit flies and red spiders are a problem in dry climates. The 5 most damaging pests and diseases to the Jamaican Jamaican soursop are the wasp, the larvae of which live in the seeds and emerge from the fully-grown ripe Jamaican soursop fruit leaving it perforated and highly perishable; the moth, which lays its eggs in the very young Jamaican Jamaican soursop fruit causing stunting and malformation; 3) Corythucha gossipii, which attacks the Jamaican soursop leaves; Cratosomus inaequalis, which bores into the Jamaican Jamaican soursop fruit, branches and trunk and Laspeyresia sp., which perforates the Jamaican soursop flowers.

The first 3 are among the 7 major pests of the Jamaican soursop in the West Indies, the other 4 being: Toxoptera aurantii; which affects shoots, young Jamaican soursop leaves, flowers and Jamaican soursop fruits; present but not important in Venezuela; Aphis spiraecola; Empoasca sp., attacking the Jamaican soursop leaves; and Aconophora concolor, damaging the flowers and Jamaican soursop fruits. Important beneficial agents preying on aphids are A phidius testataceipes, Chrysopa sp., and Curinus sp. Lesser enemies of the Jamaican soursop in South America include: Talponia backeri and T. batesi which damage flowers and Jamaican soursop fruits; Horiola picta and H. lineolata, feeding on flowers and young branches; Membracis foliata, attacking young branches, flower stalks and Jamaican soursop fruits; Saissetia nigra; Escama ovalada, on branches, flowers and Jamaican soursop fruits; Cratosomus bombina, a Jamaican soursop fruit borer; and Cyclocephala signata, affecting the flowers.

In Jamaica, the damage done to Jamaican soursop flowers by pests and diseases seriously limits the cultivation of this Jamaican soursop fruit. The sphinx caterpillar may be found feeding on Jamaican soursop leaves in Puerto Rico. Bagging of Jamaican soursops is necessary to protect them from Cerconota anonella. However, one grower in the Magdalena Valley of Colombia claims that bagged Jamaican soursop fruits are more acid than others and the flowers have to be hand pollinated.

It has been observed in Venezuela and El Salvador that Jamaican sour sop trees in very humid areas often grow well but bear only a few Jamaican soursop fruits, usually of poor quality, which are apt to rot at the tip. Most of their flowers and young Jamaican sour sop fruits fall because of anthracnose caused by Collectotrichum gloeosporioides. It has been said that Jamaican soursop trees for cultivation near San Juan, Puerto Rico, should be seedlings of trees from similarly humid areas which have greater resistance to anthracnose than seedlings from dry zones. The same fungus causes damping-off of seedlings and die-back of twigs and branches.

Occasionally the fungus, Scolecotrichum sp. ruins the Jamaican soursop leaves in Venezuela. In the East Indies, Jamaican sour sop trees are sometimes subject to the root-fungi, Fomes lamaoensis and Diplodia sp. and by pink disease due to Corticum salmonicolor.

The Jamaican soursop is usually processed into ice creams, sherbets and drinks, but fiber-free varieties are often eaten raw. The large, elongated, somewhat ovaloid Jamaican soursop fruit, can be up to 12" long and 6" wide and usually weighs several pounds. The Jamaican Jamaican sour sop fruit is covered in small knobby spines that easily break off when the Jamaican sour sop fruit is ripe. The thin, inedible, leathery green skin cuts easily to yield the large mass of cream colored, fragrant, juicy, and somewhat fibrous, edible flesh.

A typical Jamaican sour sop contains anywhere from 30-200 black-brown seeds, each about 1/2" long and 1/4" wide and enclosed in a separate "pocket" of flesh. There are known seedless varieties, but they are rare, and tend to have fibrous flesh. Jamaican sour sops are processed into excellent ice creams, sherbets and beverages throughout much of Central and South America.

Sweet varieties of the Jamaican sour sop fruit can be eaten raw, and are often used for dessert. Today, Jamaican soursop ice cream, marketed under its Spanish name "Guanabana," can be found in some gourmet supermarkets. Preserved Jamaican soursop in syrup can also be found in many ethnic markets. The canned Jamaican soursop pulp can be pureed or blended in the home, and easily transformed into a delicious desert, although fresh Jamaican soursop pulp is more desirable. Immature Jamaican sour sops are often cooked, and eaten as a vegetable. The Jamaican soursop leaves and roots of the tree have various medicinal properties. Jamaican sour sops are high in vitamins B1, B2 and C.

Jamaican Jamaican soursop is of the least acid flavor and least fibrous consistency is cut in sections and the flesh eaten with a spoon. The seeded Jamaican soursop pulp may be torn or cut into bits and added to Jamaican soursop fruit cups or salads, or chilled and served as dessert with sugar and a little milk or cream.

Most widespread throughout the tropics is the making of refreshing Jamaican Jamaican soursop drink recipes.  For this purpose, the seeded Jamaican soursop pulp of the Jamaican Jamaican soursop may be pressed in a colander or sieve or squeezed in cheesecloth to extract the rich, creamy juice, which is then beaten with milk or water and sweetened. Or the seeded Jamaican sour sop pulp may be blended with an equal amount of boiling water and then strained and sweetened. If an electric blender is to be used, one must first be careful to remove all the Jamaican sour sop seeds, since they are somewhat toxic and none should be accidentally ground up in the juice.

In Puerto Rican processing factories, the hand-peeled and cored Jamaican soursop fruits are passed through a mechanical Jamaican soursop pulper having nylon brushes that press the Jamaican soursop pulp through a screen, separating it from the seeds and fiber. A Jamaican sour sop soft drink, containing 12 to 15% Jamaican soursop pulp, is canned in Puerto Rico and keeps well for a year or more. The juice is prepared as a carbonated bottled beverage in Guatemala, and a fermented, cider-like drink is sometimes made in the West Indies. The vacuum-concentrated juice is canned commercially in the Philippines.

There Jamaican soursop drink recipes are popular but the normal "milk" color is not. The people usually add pink or green food coloring to make the drinks more attractive. The strained Jamaican soursop pulp is said to be a delicacy mixed with wine or brandy and seasoned with nutmeg. Jamaican sour sop juice, thickened with a little gelatin, makes an agreeable dessert.

In the Dominican Republic, Jamaican soursop custard is enjoyed and a confection is made by cooking Jamaican soursop pulp in sugar syrup with cinnamon and lemon peel. Jamaican sour sop ice cream is commonly frozen in refrigerator ice-cube trays in warm countries.

In the Bahamas, it is simply made by mashing the Jamaican soursop pulp in water, letting it stand, then straining to remove fibrous material and seeds. The liquid is then blended with sweetened condensed milk, poured into the trays and stirred several times while freezing. A richer product is made by the usual method of preparing an ice cream mix and adding strained Jamaican sour sop pulp just before freezing.

Some Key West restaurants have always served Jamaican soursop ice cream and now the influx of residents from the Caribbean and Latin American countries has created a strong demand for it. The canned Jamaican sour sop pulp is imported from Central America and Puerto Rico and used in making ice cream and sherbet commercially. The Jamaican soursop pulp is used, too, for making tarts and jelly, syrup and nectar. The syrup has been bottled in Puerto Rico for local use and export. The nectar is canned in Colombia and frozen in Puerto Rico and is prepared fresh and sold in paper cartons in the Netherlands Antilles. The strained, frozen Jamaican sour sop pulp is sold in plastic bags in Philippine supermarkets.

Immature Jamaican soursops are cooked as vegetables or used in soup in Indonesia. They are roasted or fried in northeastern Brazil. I have boiled the half-grown Jamaican soursop fruit whole, without peeling. In an hour, the Jamaican soursop fruit is tender, its flesh off-white and mealy, with the aroma and flavor of roasted ears of green corn (maize).

The Jamaican Jamaican soursop has several vitamins and minerals, with only 30 – 40 calories, the Jamaican Jamaican soursop fruit has protein, fat, carbohydrates, fiber, ash, calcium, phosphorus, iron, vitamin A, thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, ascorbic acid, amino acids, tryptophan, methiodine and lysine.

The presence of the alkaloids anonaine and anoniine has been reported in this species. The alkaloids muricine, C19H21O4N (possibly des-N-methylisocorydine or des-N methylcorydine) and muricinine, C18H19O4 (possibly des-N-methylcorytuberine), are found in the Jamaican soursop bark. Muricinine is believed to be identical to reticuline. An unnamed alkaloid occurs in the Jamaican soursop leaves and seeds. The Jamaican soursop bark is high in hydrocyanic acid. Only small amounts are found in the Jamaican soursop leaves and roots and a trace in the Jamaican soursop fruit. The seeds contain 45% of yellow non-drying oil which is an irritant poison, causing severe eye inflammation.

The Jamaican Jamaican sour sop has many other uses. The Jamaican Jamaican soursop fruit is used at times as bait in fish traps. Jamaican Jamaican soursop seeds when pulverized, the seeds are effective pesticides against head lice, southern army worms and pea aphids and petroleum ether and chloroform extracts are toxic to black carpet beetle larvae. The Jamaican soursop seed oil kills head lice. The Jamaican Jamaican soursop tree Jamaican soursop leaves are lethal to head lice and bedbugs. The Jamaican soursop bark of the Jamaican soursop tree has been used in tanning. The Jamaican soursop bark fiber is strong but, since Jamaican soursop fruiting trees are not expendable, is resorted to only in necessity. Jamaican soursop bark, as well as seeds and roots, has been used as fish poison. The wood of the Jamaican Jamaican sour sop tree is pale, aromatic, soft, light in weight and not durable. It has been used for ox yokes because it does not cause hair loss on the neck. In Colombia, it is deemed to be suitable for pipe stems and barrel staves. Analyses in Brazil show cellulose content of 65 to 76%, high enough to be a potential source of paper Jamaican soursop pulp.

The juice of the ripe Jamaican soursop fruit is said to be diuretic and a remedy for haematuria and urethritis. Taken when fasting, it is believed to relieve liver ailments and leprosy. Pulverized immature Jamaican soursop fruits, which are very astringent, are decocted as a dysentery remedy. To draw out chiggers and speed healing, the flesh of an acid Jamaican sour sop is applied as a poultice unchanged for 3 days. There are phytochemicals in the Jamaican soursop leaves, seeds and stem of the guanabana which are cytotoxic against various types of cancer cells. There is ongoing cancer-research on this plant concerning the specific phytochemicals that are demonstrating the strongest anticancerous and antiviral properties. It seems that in contrast with chemotherapy, that indiscriminately seeks and destroys all actively reproducing cells, graviola selectively target enemy cells. It Jamaican soursop leaves all healthy and normal cells undisturbed. Jamaican soursop has an important place in traditional- and alternative medicine in Jamaica. The Jamaican Jamaican soursop leaves, seeds and Jamaican soursop fruits have aided with high cholesterol, diabetes and hypertension.

In Suriname's traditional medicine, a tea of the Jamaican soursop leaves is used against edgy nerves, hypertension with nervousness. Also used against flu and fevers. Fresh Jamaican soursop leaves are used against sleeplessness (insomnia).

In British Guiana, breaking Jamaican soursop leaves in water, "squeeze a couple of limes therein, get a drunken man and rub his head well with the Jamaican soursop leaves and water and give him a little of the water to drink and he gets as sober as a judge in no time." This sobering or tranquilizing formula may not have been widely tested, but Jamaican soursop leaves are regarded throughout Jamaica as having sedative or soporific properties. In the Netherlands Antilles, the Jamaican soursop leaves are put into one's pillowslip or strewn on the bed to promote a good night's sleep. An infusion of the Jamaican soursop leaves is commonly taken internally for the same purpose. It is taken as an analgesic and antispasmodic in Esmeraldas Province, Ecuador. In Africa, it is given to children with fever and they are also bathed lightly with it.

A decoction of the young Jamaican Jamaican soursop shoots or Jamaican soursop leaves is regarded in the West Indies as a remedy for gall bladder trouble, as well as coughs, catarrh, diarrhea, dysentery and indigestion; is said to "cool the blood," and to be able to stop vomiting and aid delivery in childbirth. The decoction is also employed in wet compresses on inflammations and swollen feet. The chewed Jamaican soursop leaves, mixed with saliva, are applied to incisions after surgery, causing proud flesh to disappear without leaving a scar. Mashed Jamaican soursop leaves are used as a poultice to alleviate eczema and other skin afflictions and rheumatism, and the sap of young Jamaican soursop leaves is put on skin eruptions. The roots of the Jamaican soursop tree are employed as a vermifuge and the root Jamaican soursop bark as an antidote for poisoning. A tincture of the powdered seeds and bay rum is a strong emetic. Jamaican Jamaican soursop flowers are believed to alleviate catarrh.

The Jamaican soursop has succeeded fairly well as a dooryard tree on the lower East coast of Florida but requires protection from cold winds and near-freezing temperatures.  Most Jamaican soursop fruit matures during summer and fall. Jamaican soursop is low in calories, fat and contains no cholesterol.  100 grams of raw Jamaican soursop fruit yields 66 calories, 3.3 g dietary fiber, 14 mg calcium, 278 mg potassium, 20.6 mg vitamin C, 27 mg phosphorus, and16.8 g carbohydrate. Jamaican soursop is not used as a cooked product, but it freezes well and retains flavor. The flesh is tart but it may still be eaten out of hand.  In the subtropics, the Jamaican soursop fruit is pulverized and strained, then mixed with rum, brandy or milk to make a beverage.  The Jamaican soursop pulp is also used in salad dressings, sauces and sorbet. The Jamaican soursop pulp is eaten as well as can be cut into bits and added to Jamaican soursop fruit cup or salads, or chilled and served as dessert with sugar and a little milk or cream. Jamaican soursop drink recipes are very popular to all Jamaicans and Latin Americans.

In Dominican Republic, a Jamaican soursop custard is made and a confection is also made by cooking Jamaican soursop pulp in sugar syrup with cinnamon and lemon peel. It is used in making ice cream and sherbets, jelly, tarts, syrup and nectar. Immature Jamaican soursop fruits are cooked as vegetables or used in soup in Indonesia. Seeds are roasted or fried in Brazil. The Jamaican soursop leaves are used as a tea to prevent high blood pressure, stomach disorders and for treatment of fevers. The tea can also be used for cleaning floors and destroying fleas. The seeds contain oil used for paint and as an insecticide. Two characteristics that cause the Jamaican soursop fruit to be highly perishable are because of its high rate of respiration, and it's susceptibility to physical damage.

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