PASSION FRUIT JAM
Passion fruit (Passiflora edulis) is the edible fruit of a plant that is native to South America but
which is widely grown in many tropical or sub-tropical areas. Other common names for passion
fruit are Maracuya, Parcha (Spanish) and Maracuja (Portuguese). The passion fruit is round to
oval, and either yellow or dark purple at maturity. It has a soft to firm, juicy interior filled with
numerous seeds. The fruit can be grown to eat or for its juice, which has a strong exotic flavour
and bright orange colour and is often added to other fruit juices to enhance the flavour.
The fruits vary in size, but on average there are 25-35 fruits per kg. The bigger fruits (heavier
than 30g) are more suitable for food processing as they have a higher percentage of juice to rind.
The juice has a pH between 2.6 and 3.0 and an unusually high starch content.
There are two important commercial varieties, purple passion fruit (Passiflora edulis), and yellow
passion fruit (Passiflora edulis flavicarpa). The latter has larger fruits, more acidic juice and a
less preferred flavour. The fruits are most suitable for processing when all greenness has
disappeared and the outer skin has a smooth or slightly crinkled surface.
The fresh whole fruit can only be stored for a few days at ambient temperature before it
deteriorates. If the storage temperature is reduced to 6.5°C, they can be stored for 3-4 weeks
before any major deterioration. The pulp can be stored for long periods in bulk with
1000-1500ppm of sulphur dioxide or benzoic acid or a mixture of both, but there is a reduction
in the quality of the flavour. During heat preservation the main problem to overcome is the loss of
the extremely heat sensitive flavour, which is susceptible to quick oxidation.
The seeds are not suitable for stock feeding due to their very high crude fibre content. However,
they can be refined and used in the manufacture of soap, paint, varnish and cooking oils.
The skin of passion fruit is a good source of pectin, and makes a good manure.
This technical brief should be read together with the brief on jams and marmalades, where there
is an overview of the principles of jam making and a general introduction to quality assurance and
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