Brazilian Fruits are mouth watering, especially the tropical ones that practically invite you to bite on them are another reason that makes the country a must-visit. Beaches, the mysterious Amazon jungle, and those lively fiestas are not the only things that the South American nation Brazil is famous for. Fruits in Brazil and their richness is virtually uncontested, and all it takes is a taste to remind you of how blessed Brazil is by Mother Nature.
Chefs everywhere also take pleasure in concocting mouth-watering desserts and dishes from the oranges, apples, and watermelons, that Brazil’s thriving agricultural industry provides.
No wonder then that Brazil has emerged as one of the top fruit exporters in the world, next only to India and China. More than 100 countries from five countries – including the U.S. England, Germany, France, and the Arab countries – regularly rely on it for their supply of cherries, grapes, and bananas.
Brazilian fruits like papayas, guavas, and bananas are best eaten during breakfast to start your day right. The vitamins in those fruits pack a punch and can provide you with huge doses of energy for at least until lunch time. In fact, some athletes and health buffs take only those fruits as their first meals in the morning, and nothing else.
Brazilian Fruits: super healthy and yummy
Açaí Bowl ( Açaí na tigela ) is a typical Brazilian dish from the Amazon Region, made of frozen pulp from the açaí palm fruit, served as a smoothie in a bowl or glass.
Brazilian Fruit Acai
Acai ( Açaí ) berry is Brazil’s super fruit, acai is a small black-purplish fruit, similar to a blueberry or grape, but a bit smaller in size. Açaí Berries are world famous for his tremendous health benefits. Acai berries have more antioxidants than any other fruit. Açaí grows on palm trees only in the Amazon Region, and local people have eaten this healthy berries for many years. Açaí berries have lots of vitamins, cholesterol-lowering Omega 3, 6 and more anthocyanin then red wine. Some people call it “Botox in a bottle” or “youthberry”. Surfers and Athletes eat it as an energy boosting fruit.
Acai Health Benefits
- Acai berries have antioxidants, minerals, vitamins, fiber & heart-healthy fats
- high in anthocyanins ( lower cholesterol in you blood )
- cholesterol-lowering Omega 3 and 6
- good amount of minerals like copper, magnesium, potassium, manganese, copper, & iron
Brazilian Fruit Guarana
Guarana is another small red berry like fruit that comes from the Amazon jungle. Guarana is a sweet fruit and a typical brazilia drink, that contains high concentration of caffeine, more than double the concentration of caffeine then in coffee. Powder from the Guarana fruit is used in many products, like in the famous Guarana Antarctica Soft drink ( see picture above ). Studies and Research have shown, that Guarana can increase memory and alertness and improve your mood.
Image: Papaya Fruit sliced and prepared at a breakfast table in Brazil ( orange one with seeds )
Papaya or Mamão is a very popular fruit in Brazil, and people in Brazil eat it for breakfast. Papaya is good for your stomach, and it comes in different sizes ranging from 7-18 inches in length and 5-11 inches in diameter. An average-sized papaya weighs about a pound. The fruit is said to be ripe when its skin turned amber to orange. When you cut open the fruit, inside are black peppercorn like seeds. Papaya flesh is orange with slight yellow or pink tones, soft in consistency and tastes deliciously sweet with rich flavor. Papaya fruit offers many health benefits as well. ( see papaya fruit on the image above, with the black seeds ) “Creme de Papaya” is a very popular and easy to prepare dessert in Brazil, just delicious.
Papaya/Mamão fruit health benefits
- high in vitamin-C content ( fresh ripe papaya have more Vitamin C then oranges or lemons )
- excellent source of Vitamin-A. Vitamin A is good for your skin and for a healthy vision
- good amount of calcium and potassium (254 mg /100 g) . Potassium helps in keeping your heart rate and blood pressure under control ( countering effects of to much salt and sodium in processed food )
Brazilian Exotic Fruits to boost your energy
Image: Mango Fruit still on the tree, un-ripe and to the right sliced and prepared ready to eat
Mango is a very delicious fruit, grown all over the tropics and is very popular in Brazil. Mangos /Mangas are nutirionally very rich fruits unique in taste and flavor. Brazilian Mangos have a typical oval shape and measure about 5 to 17 cms in length and about 4 to 10 cms in width. The outer skin of the Mango is green and smooth, when they are still hang on the tree and are un-ripe, a ripe fruit turns into golden yellow, orange-reddish colour. Mangas are usually harvested while they are still green but perfectly matured. You can not eat un-ripe ones, they taste sour. When you go to a Feria ( street market) in Brazil for your fruit shopping, look for the smaller Mangas, called manga coquinho.
Pineapple, Ananas or “abacaxi” , as people call them in Brazil are a very tasty and popular fruit. Usually Pineapple fruits are served for breakfast. In Brazil Abacaxi have a more white colour inside and taste much sweeter than Ananas from Hawai. At the “Feira” ( Fruit Market ) or street market, look out for pineapples with a yellow, orange greenish colour, these are ripe pineapple fruits. Inside, its juicy flesh have a creamy white to yellow colour. Pineapples are quite heavy, be prepared, they can weigh 1 to 8 pounds or more, and each fruit measure up to 10- 12 inches in length. A few tips when you go fruit shopping at the “Feria”, “Verde” means the fruit is still green, not ready to use or to eat.
Health benefits of Brazilian Pineapple fruit
- excellent source of Vitamin C (antioxidant vitamin )
- only 50 calories per 100 g fruit. flesh has no saturated fats or cholesterol;
- pineapple contains smaller amounts of Vitamin A
- ananas fruit is rich in B-complex group of vitamins like folates, thiamin, pyridoxine, & minerals like manganes, copper, and potassium. Potassium helps controlling your heart rate and blood pressure and is an component of cell and body fluids. ( also countering effects of to much salt and sodium in processed food )
Cashew apple or Cajú: Cajú is originally from the Northeast of Brazil. The largest cashew tree in the world ( Maior Cajueiro do Mundo ) also known as Cajueiro de Pirangi (Cashew Tree of Pirangi) is located in the district of Pirangi do Norte, close to Natal Brazil in the State of Rio Grande do Norte in Brazil. The cashew fruit itself has much more vitamin C than oranges. usually people put the whole fruit in their mouth and suck out the juice. Cashew nuts are delicious sweet and crunchy and can be eaten as a snack. Cashew nuts are full of vitamins, antioxidants, and minerals, but they have calories as well. Put a handful of cashew nuts a day in your diet ( e.g. you can add them to salads ) and you have minerals, that may help you prevent diseases.
Agua de Coco ( Coconut Water ) is a very natural drink that is very popular in Brazil. It is a good drink to have on the beach, because the coconut water is a very refreshing drink, to beat the tropical heat. Coconut water contains simple sugars, minerals and electrolytes, that keeps your body hydrated. One coconut contains about 150 to 1000 ml of water depending on type and size of the fruit. Brazilians usually drill a small hole through the shell, peer in to check the amount of juice inside, insert a straw, and just suck the liquid in. This tropical delicacy is hard on the outside but smooth and succulent on the inside.
Avocado (abacate) is different from the avocado fruit we know from the USA, Europe, and Mexico. The abacate has less fat and used for making shakes (mixed with sugar and milk). This kind of abacate is not really suitable for making a guacamole. Brazilians eat/drink abacate smashed with sugar or mixed with milk in a drink, its called a “Vitamina de Abacate”
Health Benefits Avocado Fruit
- contains Magnesium, which is essential for bone strengthening and has a cardiac protective role as well.
- avodaco contains many vitamins, Vitamin A, E, and K are concentrated in its creamy pulp.
More Exotic Brazilian Fruits
Maracujá or Passion fruit has round to oval shape, measures about 5 to 9 centimeters in diameter. Average weight is about 35-50 g. Passion fruits are usually available all year around, and have a and sweet-flavor and sweet taste. Passion fruit tastes the beest, when the fruit is well ripe, this fruit contains lots for Vitamin C, and good amounts of Vitamin B. Just scoop out its juicy pulp using a spoon. In Brazil Maracuja is used to make sweet desserts, like a mousse de maracuja. The simple-looking Passion Fruit can give enough fillings to make an elegant Passion Fruit Mousse to rival the usual chocolate dessert.
Goiaba or Guavas are available all year round in Brazil and are eaten raw, or peeled, sliced and added to fruit salads. Goiaba shows a white greenish colour and is red inside. This fruit is very high in vitamins C, A, . It is usually used to make pasta of guava and its can be eaten together with white cheese. Guavas are one of the most common fruits in Brazil, and usually you can find them on the Fruit Market for a good price. You have two kinds: goiaba branca ( white goiaba ) and goiaba vermelha (pink goiaba ) colors refer to the colors inside the fruit ). Normally you cut it in half and eat the fruit with a spoon, the small seeds inside can be eaten.
To get a impression how a Fruit Market Looks: See the Video below: The Fruit Market ( Mercadao of Sao Paulo ) is the main food market in the city. It is a great place to buy all kind of foods, also you can find coffee shops and places to go eat and have drinks as well.
Brazilian Fruit Salads
While you can always take a taste of each fruit that you fancy, one way to get a rewarding sampling of all is by trying out the Brazilian fruit salad, which is usually served in many Latin-American-themed restaurants in the US, Australia or UK. You can also be creative and make your own at home. The ingredients immediately give you the best of Brazilian fruits: slices of papaya, mangoes, watermelons, bananas, and grapes – mixed with fresh lemon juice, sprinkled with yogurt and nutmeg, and made more enticing by a scoop of ice cream on top!
That is just for starters. Your palate finds more rewards if you become more experimental and venture beyond Brazil’s more commonly known fruits. It might take a trip to more specialized supermarkets but the enjoyment of the meals would be more than worth it. Health benefits are also a plus. Brazilian fruits can make your dinner (or breakfast) table even more delectable.
There are exotic Brazilian fruits that can be turned into sparkling juices or smoothies with very little effort. All you would need is a blender, water, and sugar. The avocados that Brazil produces are much larger than those usually found in Europe and Asia; Brazilians savor their sweetness by pouring small quantities of milk on the insides before digging in. The beet-red pitangas look like cherries and their tangy flavor makes them ideal ingredients for a smoothie upper. Acerolas look like fist-sized tomatoes with a shade of crimson; put them into a blender to whip up a sweet drink and you get 100 times more vitamin C than you would had you eaten a papaya.
Those who prefer sophisticated, cool liquor over juices or drinks can take a chance on the grape-like Jaboticaba which wine manufacturers use as one of the ingredients to ferment fine wine. Needless to say, a Jaboticaba-driven wine is best taken during dinner or celebrations.
After those drinks, your sweet tooth might be in the mood for something that it can savor. Brazilian fruits are ideal ingredients for desserts like cakes, food fingers, and puddings, just for starters.
The simple-looking Passion Fruit can give enough fillings to make an elegant Passion Fruit Mousse to rival the usual chocolate brand. Scoop enough papaya and mix them with ice cream and yogurt to serve a crème de Papaya that your friends will not easily forget- not with its unique taste of ice cream and wine combined. The modest Guava now has its own sweet version, named after a famous Shakespeare play: the Romeu e Julieta is a sandwich that offers white cheese spliced with sweet guava fillings for a heavy snack.
Lemon and coconut can also add layers to a chocolate cake that Brazilians call Pave. The milk of the coconut, the arresting flavor of the cocoa, and the spunky bittersweet aftermath of the lemon makes the Pave a strong rival to the traditionally baked chocolate cake.
Brazilian fruits can be enjoyed in so many ways. Smoothies and juices are a wonderful and healthy accompaniment to a strong breakfast that will set the tone for the rest of the day. Exotic desserts, done with a little innovation, add something unique to your meals. And finally, there is that just simple but lasting relish you feel when you bite into a banana, pineapple, or grape from Brazil. The ingredients boost your energy while the taste makes you come alive – a wonderful gift from a country where people through song, dance, and a respect for the environment celebrate their passion for life.