Photo - Liliko'i blossom, bud and green fruit.
Known as liliko'i in Hawaii, the passionfruit is also known as Maracuya, Parcha or Parchita in many Central and South American countries. If you can't find fresh passionfruit in your area, some Hispanic or Asian markets carry the frozen concentrated passionfruit juice. In some parts of the mainland they are known as Maypops.
Lilliko'i vines all around us are producing like crazy... This is the second crop this year so far and we will probably have another sometime near or around the Christmas holidays.
For the last week or so, we have been making the rounds and gathering them off the ground as they ripen and fall. Yesterday I juiced a bunch of them and today have another sackful to do.
Photo - Liliko'i fruit, some green and some almost ripe and ready to pick.
Sometimes I just cut the fruit open, scoop out the seeds and pulp, pour it into freezer bags or plastic containers and freeze until I have enough to make a larger quantity of syrup or just to juice.
Other times I will go ahead and strain out the seeds and save just the pulp and juice. To do this, I use a large stainless steel mesh colander over a large bowl and try to squeeze as much juice and pulp out of them as I can with a large wooden spoon.
Photo - This was the bunch of fruit I juiced yesterday
Photo - I got a little bit over 8 cups of juice, seeds and pulp out of a 3 day harvest.
I will be straining this batch to extract as much of the juice and pulp as possible and my son wants to scatter the seeds on another area of the yard to see if we can get more vines growing.
I like to use the juice for making dressings and vinaigrettes as gifts from my kitchen or to use as a 'drenching' syrup for a chocolate cake or even to mix in a cream cheese icing.
Another way we like to use the juice is in making a Liliko'i Cream Pie. Use your favorite Key Lime pie recipe and substitute the lime with the juice of the liliko'i instead. It is much better when made in an Oreo Cookie crumb pie shell.
Take a small bag of the mini Oreos and empty it into a ziplock bag. Crush the cookies with a rolling pin or with a meat pounder. Line a pie dish with the crumbs and pat in place with clean fingers or a hand covered with a plastic bag. Be sure to go up the sides as far as you can. The cream filling will help hold the crumbs together.
Pour the pie filling mix into the shell and then bake as you would any cream pie. Top with homemade whipped cream.
You can also freeze the juice in ice cube trays. Pop lose when frozen and store in freezer bags to use in drinks. Try dropping a cube in a glass of Ginger Ale or iced tea!
More about liliko'i and recipes I've written can be found in the following articles I published at Gather sometime ago