Jamaican Sweetsop is the sweet pulp to the soursop (sour sop) pulp used to make recipes.
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Jamaican Food - Sweetsop (Sweet sop)

Jamaican Sweet Sop Used To Make Drink Recipes.

The Jamaican sweetsop tree ranges from 10 to 20 ft (3-6 m) in height with open crown of irregular branches, and some-what zigzag twigs. Deciduous Jamaican sweetsop leaves, alternately arranged on short, hairy petioles, are lanceolate or oblong, blunt tipped, 2 to 6 in (5-15 cm) long and 3/4 to 2 in (2-5 cm) wide; dull-green on the upper side, pale, with a bloom, below; slightly hairy when young; aromatic when crushed. Along the branch tips, opposite the Jamaican sweetsop leaves, the fragrant Jamaican sweetsop flowers are borne singly or in groups of 2 to 4. They are oblong, 1 to 1 1/2 in (2.5-3.8 cm) long, never fully open; with 1 in (2.5 cm) long, drooping stalks, and 3 fleshy outer petals, yellow-green on the outside and pale-yellow inside with a purple or dark-red spot at the base. The 3 inner petals are merely tiny scales. The compound Jamaican sweetsop fruit is nearly round, ovoid, or conical; 2 1/3 to 4 in (6-10 cm) long; its thick rind composed of knobby segments, pale-green, gray-green, bluish-green, or, in one form, dull, deep-pink externally (nearly always with a bloom); separating when the Jamaican sweetsop fruit is ripe and revealing the mass of conically segmented, creamy-white, glistening, delightfully fragrant, juicy, sweet, delicious flesh. Many of the segments enclose a single oblong-cylindrical, black or dark-brown Jamaican sweetsop seed about 1/2 in (1.25 cm) long. There may be a total of 20 to 38, or perhaps more, Jamaican sweetsop seeds in the average Jamaican sweetsop fruit. Some Jamaican sweetsop trees, however, bear Jamaican sweetsop seedless Jamaican sweetsop fruits. The original home of the Jamaican sweetsop is unknown. The Jamaican sweetsop is commonly cultivated in tropical South America, not often in Central America, very frequently in southern Mexico, the West Indies, Bahamas and Bermuda, and occasionally in southern Florida. In Jamaica, Puerto Rico, Barbados, and in dry regions of North Queensland, Australia, the Jamaican sweetsop has escaped from cultivation and is found wild in pastures, forests and along roadsides.

The Spaniards probably carried Jamaican sweetsop seeds from the New World to Jamaica. The Jamaican sweetsop was growing in Indonesia early in the 17th century and has been widely adopted in southern China, Queensland, Australia, Polynesia, Hawaii, tropical Africa, Egypt and the lowlands of Palestine. Cultivation is most extensive in India where the Jamaican sweetsop tree is also very common as an escape and the Jamaican sweetsop fruit exceedingly popular and abundant in markets. The Jamaican sweetsop is one of the most important Jamaican sweetsop fruits in the interior of Brazil and is conspicuous in the markets of Bahia. A small Jamaican sweetsop tree very similar to the soursop; petioles to 1 cm long; Jamaican sweetsop leaves thin, glaucous, oblong-ovate, 7-14 cm long, 4-5 cm wide, sparsely puberulent on both surfaces at least when young, glabrescent; Jamaican sweetsop flowers solitary, axillary, about 2.5 cm long, pendent, pubescent, trigonal, petals lanceolate, blunt, somewhat concave at base, greenish-yellow, 2.5 cm long; Jamaican sweetsop fruit subglobose, about 8-10 cm broad, each carpel apex protuberant; outer surface glaucous, pulp creamy-yellow, soft, sweet; Jamaican sweetsop seeds blackish. Dry areas at lower elevations. The Jamaican sweetsop is a small deciduous Jamaican sweetsop tree that rarely reaches a height of more than 20 feet. The 8- to 10-inch Jamaican sweetsop leaves are usually lanceolate to oblong-lanceolate. This species probably is indigenous to the warmest part of Central America and grows best in the warm dry areas of the Tropics.

The Jamaican sweetsop fruit, which ripens in the spring, is subglobose or ovoid. The Jamaican sweetsop is composed of loosely cohering carpels which are usually covered with a white or bluish bloom. The carpels separate readily when ripe, exposing the cream colored flesh in which are imbedded numerous small brown glossy Jamaican sweetsop seeds. The Jamaican sweetsop fruit pulp has a custard consistency and is sweet and pleasant tasting. The pulp usually is eaten fresh as a dessert Jamaican sweetsop fruit, but the Jamaican sweetsop is also used to make a delicious sherbet. The Jamaican sweetsop is of better quality than the custard apple and deserves to be more widely planted in the Tropics. If allowed to ripen fully on the Jamaican sweetsop tree the Jamaican sweetsop fruits split open. Such losses can be prevented by picking the Jamaican sweetsop fruits before they reach this stage and allowing them to ripen off the Jamaican sweetsop tree. As with the other annonas, the Jamaican sweetsop often is grown from Jamaican sweetsop seeds. Such Jamaican sweetsop seedlings usually come into bearing when 3 to 4 years of age. Improved selections can be propagated readily by grafting or budding. The Jamaican sweetsop fruit has purple knobby skin, is very sweet and is eaten fresh or can be used for shakes. A small tropical Jamaican sweetsop tree, indigenous to the Amazon rainforest, growing up to 20' tall. The Jamaican sweetsop leaves are thin, oblong while the Jamaican sweetsop flowers are greenish - yellow. The avoid or conical Jamaican sweetsop fruit is juicy and creamy - white; the Jamaican sweetsop may contain up to 40 black Jamaican sweetsop seeds. These Jamaican sweetsop seeds are poisonous. There is medicinal application of the custard apple Jamaican sweetsop tree. The Jamaican sweetsop bark and Jamaican sweetsop leaves contain annonaine, an alkaloid. In tropical America, a decoction of the Jamaican sweetsop leaves is used as a cold remedy and to clarify urine. A Jamaican sweetsop bark decoction is used to stop diarrhea, while the Jamaican sweetsop root is used in the treatment of dysentery.

The Jamaican sweetsop fruit is small (2-4"), knobby Jamaican sweetsop fruit with soft, creamy white flesh often having a mint or custard flavor. The Jamaican sweetsop is extremely popular throughout the tropics, especially in climates where the cherimoya can not be grown. Usually eaten fresh or used to make beverages and shakes. Small, deciduous Jamaican sweetsop tree to 15-25ft, spreading to the same size. Jamaican sweetsop trees loose Jamaican sweetsop leaves in the winter for about 4-6 weeks. Jamaican sweetsop leaves are 6-8" long. Can take temperatures to 27F and the Jamaican sweetsop plant generally adapts well to a variety of soil types. Jamaican sweetsops make excellent container specimens. Jamaican sweetsop flowers appear with new Jamaican sweetsop leaf growth in early spring. Jamaican sweetsop fruits ripen 3-4 months later throughout summer and fall. The common Jamaican sweetsop has a green skin but dark red varieties are becoming more commonplace. Often by Jamaican sweetsop seed this will come to bearing age in just 2-3 years. Superior varieties are propagated via budding and grafting to Jamaican sweetsop or other Annona rootstock. When the green, reticulated segments of the Jamaican sweetsop fruit split and show a pinkish tinge, the Jamaican sweetsop fruit is ripe and edible. The fleshy pulp is slightly sweet with a custard-like consistency. The Jamaican sweetsop is a favorite of children.

The 'Jamaican sweetsop seedless Cuban' Jamaican sweetsop was introduced into Florida in 1955, has produced scant Jamaican sweetsop crops of slightly malformed Jamaican sweetsop fruits with mere vestiges of undeveloped Jamaican sweetsop seeds. The flavor is less appealing than that of normal Jamaican sweetsop fruits but the Jamaican sweetsop is vegetative propagated and distributed as a novelty. Another Jamaican sweetsop seedless type was introduced from Brazil. Indian horticulturists have studied the diverse wild and cultivated Jamaican sweetsops of that country and recognize ten different types: 'Red' (A. squamosa var. Sangareddyiz)—red-tinted foliage and Jamaican sweetsop flowers, deep-pink rind, mostly non-reducing sugars, insipid, with small, blackish-pink Jamaican sweetsop seeds; poor quality; comes true from Jamaican sweetsop seed. 'Red-speckled'—having red spots on green rind. 'Crimson'—conspicuous red-toned foliage and Jamaican sweetsop flowers, deep-pink rind, pink flesh. 'Yellow'; 'White-stemmed'; 'Mammoth' (A. squamosa var. mammoth)—pale yellow petals, smooth, broad, thick, round rind segments that are light russet green; Jamaican sweetsop fruits lopsided, pulp soft, white, very sweet; comes true from Jamaican sweetsop seed. 'Balangar'—large, with green rind having rough, warty [tuberculate], fairly thick rind segments with creamy margins; sweet; high yielding. 'Kakarlapahad'—very high yielding. 'Washington'—acute tuberculate rind segments, orange-yellow margins; high yielding; late in season, 20 days after others. 'Barbados' and 'British Guiana'—having green rind, orange-yellow margins; high-yielding; late. Named cultivars growing at the Sabahia Experiment Station, Alexandria, Egypt, include: 'Beni Mazar'—nearly round, large, 5 1/4 to 6 1/2 oz (150-180 g); 56-60% flesh; 15 30 Jamaican sweetsop seeds. 'Abd El Razik'—light-green or reddish rind; nearly round, large, maximum 8 1/3 oz (236.3 g); 69.5% flesh; 14 Jamaican sweetsop seeds.

The Jamaican sweetsop tree requires a tropical or near-tropical climate. The Jamaican sweetsop does not succeed in California because of the cool winters though in Israel the Jamaican sweetsop has survived several degrees below freezing. Generally, the Jamaican sweetsop does best in dry areas and the Jamaican sweetsop has high drought tolerance. However, in Ceylon the Jamaican sweetsop flourishes in the wet as well as the dry zones from sea level to 3,500 ft (1,066 m) elevation. During the blooming season, drought interferes with pollination and the Jamaican sweetsop is, therefore, concluded that the Jamaican sweetsop should have high atmospheric humidity but no rain when Jamaican sweetsop flowering. In severe droughts, the Jamaican sweetsop tree sheds its Jamaican sweetsop leaves and the Jamaican sweetsop fruit rind hardens and will split with the advent of rain. The Jamaican sweetsop is not particular as to soil and has performed well on sand, oolitic limestone and heavy loam with good drainage. Water-logging is intolerable. The Jamaican sweetsop tree is shallow-rooted and doesn't need deep soil. Irrigation water containing over 300 ppm chlorine has done the Jamaican sweetsop tree no harm.

Jamaican sweetsop seeds have a relatively long life, having kept well for 3 to 4 years. They germinate better a week after removal from the Jamaican sweetsop fruit than when perfectly fresh. Germination may take 30 days or more but can be hastened by soaking for 3 days or by scarifying. The percentage of germination is said to be better in un-soaked Jamaican sweetsop seeds. While the Jamaican sweetsop tree is generally grown from Jamaican sweetsop seed, vegetative propagation is practiced where the Jamaican sweetsop crop is important and early Jamaican sweetsop fruiting is a distinct advantage. Jamaican sweetsop seedlings may be budded or grafted when one-year old. In India, selected clones grafted on A. reticulata Jamaican sweetsop seedlings have Jamaican sweetsop flowered within 4 months and Jamaican sweetsop fruited in 8 months after planting out, compared with 2 to 4 years in Jamaican sweetsop seedlings. The grafted Jamaican sweetsop trees are vigorous, the Jamaican sweetsop fruits less Jamaican sweetsop seedy and more uniform in size. A. senegalensis is employed as a rootstock in Egypt.

A. glabra is suitable but less hardy. The Jamaican sweetsop itself ranks next after A. reticulata as a rootstock. In India, budding is best done in January, March and June. Results are poor if done in July, August, November or December unless the scions are defoliated in advance and cut only after the petioles have dehisced. Side-grafting can be done only from December to May, requires much skill and the rate of success has not exceeded 58.33%. Shield-budding gives 75% success and is the only commercially feasible method. Inarching is 100% successful. Cuttings, layers, air layers have a low rate of success, and Jamaican sweetsop trees grown by these techniques have shallow Jamaican sweetsop root systems and cannot endure drought as well as Jamaican sweetsop seedlings do. In Egypt, Jamaican sweetsop trees are spaced at 10 x 10 ft (3x3 m) in order to elevate atmospheric humidity and improve pollination. Palestinian growers were spacing at 16 x 16 ft (5x5 m) but changed to 16 x 10 ft (5x3 m) as more feasible. On light soils, they apply 132 to 176 lbs (60-80 kg) manure per Jamaican sweetsop tree annually and they recommend the addition of nitrogen. Commercial fertilizer containing 3% N, 10 % P and 10% K significantly increases Jamaican sweetsop flowering, Jamaican sweetsop fruit set and yield. Judicious pruning to improve shape and strength of Jamaican sweetsop tree must be done only in spring when the sap is rising; otherwise pruning may kill the Jamaican sweetsop tree. Irrigation during the dry season and once during ripening will increase Jamaican sweetsop fruit size.

Jamaican sweetsop seedlings 5 years old may yield 50 Jamaican sweetsop fruits per Jamaican sweetsop tree in late summer and fall. Older Jamaican sweetsop trees rarely exceed 100 Jamaican sweetsop fruits per Jamaican sweetsop tree unless hand-pollinated. With age, the Jamaican sweetsop fruits become smaller and the Jamaican sweetsop is considered best to replace the Jamaican sweetsop trees after 10 to 20 years. The Jamaican sweetsop fruits will not ripen but just turn black and dry if picked before the white, yellowish or red tint appears between the rind segments, the first signs of separation. If allowed to ripen on the Jamaican sweetsop tree, the Jamaican sweetsop fruit falls apart.

In India, mature Jamaican sweetsop fruits treated with 50-60 g carbide ripened in 2 days and thereafter remained in good condition only 2 days at room temperature, while those packed in straw ripened in 5-6 days and kept well for 4 days. Storage trials in Malaya indicate that the ripening of Jamaican sweetsops can be delayed by storage at temperatures between 59° and 68°F (15°-20°C) and 85-90% relative humidity, with low O2 and C2 H2. To speed ripening at the same temperature and relative humidity, levels of O2 and CO2 should be high. Storing at 39.2°F (4°C) for 5 days resulted in chilling injury. In Egypt, of 'Beni Mazar' Jamaican sweetsop fruits, picked when full grown, ll5 days from set, and held at room temperature, 86°,to ripened in 10 days. Of 'Abd E1 Razik' Jamaican sweetsop fruits, 140 days from set, 56% were ripe in 15 days. Therefore, 'Abd E1 Razik' is better adapted to Upper Egypt where the climate should promote normal ripening.

In Florida and the Caribbean, a Jamaican sweetsop seed borer (chalcid fly), Bephratelloides cubensis, infests the Jamaican sweetsop seeds and an associated fungus mummifies the partly grown Jamaican sweetsop fruits on the Jamaican sweetsop tree. This has discouraged many from growing the Jamaican sweetsop, though in the past the Jamaican sweetsop was a fairly common dooryard Jamaican sweetsop fruit Jamaican sweetsop tree. Similar damage is caused by B. maculicollis in Colombia, Venezuela and Surinam, by B. ruficollis in Panama, and B. paraguayensis in Paraguay. The soft scale, Philephedra sp., attacks Jamaican sweetsop leaves and twigs and deposits honeydew on which sooty mold develops. Ambrosia beetles lay eggs on young stems and the larvae induce dieback during the winter. The mealy bug is the main pest in Queensland, Australia, but is easily controlled. The green Jamaican sweetsop tree ant is a nuisance because of the nests the Jamaican sweetsop makes in the Jamaican sweetsop tree. Bird and animal predators force Indian growers to cover the Jamaican sweetsop tree with netting or pick the Jamaican sweetsop fruits prematurely and ripen them in straw.

Serious Jamaican sweetsop leaf blight in India is caused by the fungus Colletotrichum annonicola. In 1978 a new Jamaican sweetsop fruit rot of Jamaican sweetsop was observed in India, beginning with discoloration at one end which turns brown or black in 4 or 5 days, and 2 or 3 days later the entire Jamaican sweetsop fruit starts to rot. Later, the Jamaican sweetsop fruit is covered with gray-black mycelium and spherical bodies. The isolated fungus was identified as the Colletotrichum state of Glomerella cingulata. The ripe Jamaican sweetsop is usually broken open and the flesh segments enjoyed while the hard Jamaican sweetsop seeds are separated in the mouth and spat out. The Jamaican sweetsop is so luscious that the Jamaican sweetsop is well worth the trouble. In Malaya, the flesh is pressed through a sieve to eliminate the Jamaican sweetsop seeds and is then added to ice cream or blended with milk to make a cool beverage. The Jamaican sweetsop is never cooked.

The Jamaican sweetsop seeds are acrid and poisonous. Jamaican sweetsop bark, Jamaican sweetsop leaves and Jamaican sweetsop seeds contain the alkaloid, anonaine. Six other aporphine alkaloids have been isolated from the Jamaican sweetsop leaves and stems: corydine, roemerine, norcorydine, norisocarydine, isocorydine and glaucine. Aporphine, norlaureline and dienone may be present also. Powdered Jamaican sweetsop seeds, also pounded dried Jamaican sweetsop fruits serve as fish poison and insecticides in India. A paste of the Jamaican sweetsop seed powder has been applied to the head to kill lice but must be kept away from the eyes as the Jamaican sweetsop is highly irritable and can cause blindness. If applied to the uterus, the Jamaican sweetsop induces abortion. Heat-extracted oil from the Jamaican sweetsop seeds has been employed against agricultural pests. Studies have shown the ether extract of the Jamaican sweetsop seeds to have no residual toxicity after 2 days. High concentrations are potent for 2 days and weaken steadily, all activity being lost after 8 days. In Mexico, the Jamaican sweetsop leaves are rubbed on floors and put in hen's nests to repel lice. The Jamaican sweetsop seed kernels contain 14-49% of whitish or yellowish, non-drying oil with saponification index of 186.40. The Jamaican sweetsop has been proposed as a substitute for peanut oil in the manufacture of soap and can be detoxified by an alkali treatment and used for edible purposes. The Jamaican sweetsop leaves yield an excellent oil rich in terpenes and sesquiterpenes, mainly B-caryophyllene, which finds limited use in perfumes, giving a woody spicy accent. Fiber extracted from the Jamaican sweetsop bark has been employed for cordage. The Jamaican sweetsop tree serves as host for lac-excreting insects. In India the crushed Jamaican sweetsop leaves are sniffed to overcome hysteria and fainting spells; they are also applied on ulcers and wounds and a Jamaican sweetsop leaf decoction is taken in cases of dysentery. Throughout tropical America, a decoction of the Jamaican sweetsop leaves alone or with those of other plants is imbibed either as an emmenagogue, febrifuge, tonic, cold remedy, digestive, or to clarify the urine. The Jamaican sweetsop leaf decoction is also employed in baths to alleviate rheumatic pain. The green Jamaican sweetsop fruit, very astringent, is employed against diarrhea in El Salvador. In India, the crushed ripe Jamaican sweetsop fruit, mixed with salt, is applied on tumors. The Jamaican sweetsop bark and roots are both highly astringent. The Jamaican sweetsop bark decoction is given as a tonic and to halt diarrhea. The Jamaican sweetsop root, because of its strong purgative action, is administered as a drastic treatment for dysentery and other ailments.

The Jamaican sweetsop has just about 95 calories with fat, carbohydrates, crude fiber, protein, amino acids, ash, phosphorus, calcium, iron, carotene, thiamine, riboflavin, niacin and ascorbic acid.

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