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Mar 18, 2013 09:52 AM

ISO Passion Fruit

(my original post has not shown up, so if a duplicate appears mods, please delete)

I have a VERY picky 6 year old who doesn't eat much, so when he told his mother and I he wanted to try passion fruit, we went on the hunt. Sadly, we havent' been able to find any in our local grocery stores, any idea where I could find such a thing? Russo's maybe?

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  1. If you are looking to do something prepared -- dessert, sorbet, smoothie, juice, etc. I would recommend getting the frozen pulp or juice concentrate. I think the imported Brazilian pulp sold at Brazilian markets is much better than the Goya/La Fe. The Brazilian juice concentrate is also very handy and good for desserts like passion fruit mousse. I think you are South of the city, so might be able to find both items around Quincy.

    There is some passion fruit from Florida and California, as well as imported. It looks like some purple passion fruit from New Zealand is available wholesale right now, but you are going to have to look long and hard (Southeast Asian markets might be your best bet) to find it onesie-twosie. You certainly could find someone to order it, if you are willing to commit to a case. However, keep in mind that passion fruits are full of seeds and at least with the yellow varities they are not that pretty when truely ripe (also not necessarily as sweet as you would think), so the pulp is generally a much better option.

    4 Replies
    1. re: itaunas

      I love the Brazilian "Da Fruta" brand concentrates. Not sugary sweet, great with seltzer.

      1. re: itaunas

        What are the names / locations of your favorite Brazilian markets around Boston/Cambridge/Somerville to find this frozen passion fruit puree? I have tried random stops into shops without success so far.

        1. re: rlh

          rlh while I responded somewhat generally here, the poster was looking for the fresh product and I believe they are from South of Boston so I said "Brazilian markets" for brevity sake as I am not certain what Brazilian markets nearby (Quincy) carry it.

          The two places I usually buy the pulp is Casa de Carnes Solucao on Bow St in Somerville and JC Market on Chelsea St in Everett. The importer is from Marlborough and its Amazon Fruit or something like that. They had a website which listed restaurants serving their pulp which would help with the general distribution area. I can specifically think of a few places in the suburbs to look, but in the area you mentioned I would also check La Sultana Market on Broadway in Somerville (they have freezers in multiple places so poke around). I don't think Tony's Foodland carries them (Gauchao restaurant also didn't do blended juices), but they have decent shelf space for other Brazilian products (sausages, cheeses).

          The distributor initially supplied restaurants and its mostly larger Brazilian markets or butchers (acougues) which carry the fruit. I think they tried to bundle distribution with freezers, so some places have chest freezers with just the pulp (much like Helados Juli has done in East Boston and the surrounds), but often its loose in a freezer. You want a place which does a decent amount of business and has coolers, this is usually a butcher or a supermarket (cheeses).

          The Brazilian passion fruit juice concentrate is very widely available, because its shelf-stable and there are several brands. This you can get in Market Basket, the occasional Stop and Shop, your corner Brazilian store. There are a lot of similarities between this and pulp which is very thin, but I like it more for mousse and mixed juice, but the frozen pulp has more taste. Goya, La Fe, and a Columbian frozen pulp are more widely available. La Internacional should have one, supermarkets like Market Basket or S&S or Shaws will have Goya/La Fe in some places.

          1. re: itaunas

            Awesome details - thanks!

            Now I have a quest fhe Amazon Fruit product - I have been paying quite a premium to order (very good) bottled passion fruit syrup from Hawaii for tiki drinks - but I want to make my own and didn't think Goya/La Fe really measured up in terms of taste.

      2. I bought an unripe fruit at the River St. Whole Foods in Cambridge last week.

        1. Russo's does seem to be the default place to find unusual fruits and veggies. But I can't recall if I saw any when I was there last week.

          1. I was at Russo's yesterday (Sunday) and they do have passion fruits. But I agree--they are weird looking and have lots of seeds in the small amount of pulp and if you want your picky eater to see if he likes the taste, I might not distract him with the weird texture. I would try the frozen pulp, as itaunas recommended. Or if he likes weird things, he might be super excited about it, you would know!

            4 Replies
            1. re: dulce de leche

              Yeah, I'm not so concerned that he'll like it or not, as much as I am trying to encourage him to try new things. As a former food service professional, I still cook a lot at home, and always trying new things, and would like him to 'get with the program' if you will. Man can not live on pizza alone! That being said, we go to Regina's every Saturday....and that is the best freaking pizza in town!

              1. re: devilham

                ;) There are so many new things to try at Russo's, maybe he can pick out a few that look interesting. Like fresh tamarinds, maybe? My five year old is crazy about them and the whole process of eating them is really fun.

                1. re: dulce de leche

                  has the child tried pomegranates? they are usually available at Arax in Watertown.

              2. re: dulce de leche

                I bought some at Russo's recently. They were pretty good, but quite small and quite expensive. I believe I have seen them at Wegman's as well. Juice Bar in Chinatown does a very nice passion fruit juice drink.

              3. Volante Farm in Needham has them. They were large, but not ripe.