(L.) P. Royen
Sapodilla (Manilkara zapota) is a long-lived, evergreen tree native to southern Mexico and Central America. It is grown in huge quantities in India, Mexico and was introduced to the Philippines during Spanish colonisation.
Sapodilla grows to 3-4 m tall. It is wind-resistant and the bark is rich in a white, gummy latex called chicle. The ornamental leaves are medium green and glossy. They are alternate, elliptic to ovate, 7-15 cm long, with an entire margin. The white flowers are inconspicuous and bell-like, with a six-lobed corolla.
The fruit is a large ellipsoid berry, 4-8 cm in diameter, very much resembling a smooth-skinned potato and containing 2-5 seeds. Inside, its flesh ranges from a pale yellow to an earthy brown color with a grainy texture akin to that of a well-ripened pear. The seeds are black and resemble beans, with a hook at one end that can catch in the throat if swallowed.
The flavor is exceptionally sweet and very tasty, with what can be described as a malty flavor. The unripe fruit is hard to the touch and contains high amounts of saponin, which has astringent properties similar to tannin, drying out the mouth.
The sapodilla trees yield fruit twice a year, though flowering may continue year round. The fruit has a high latex content and does not ripen until picked. Some are round and some are oval with pointed ends.
Sapodilla is known as chikoo ("चिक्कू" or "chiku," "चीकू,") and sapota in India, sofeda in eastern India and Bangladesh, sawo in ඉන්දුනීසියාව, hồng xiêm (lit. "Siamese persimmon") or xa pô chê in Vietnam, lamoot (ละมุด) in Thailand and Cambodia, sapodilla in Guyana sapathilla or rata-mi in Sri Lanka, níspero in Colombia, Nicaragua, El Salvador, Dominican Republic and Venezuela, nípero in Cuba, Puerto Rico and Dominican Republic, dilly in The Bahamas, naseberry in the rest of the Caribbean, sapoti in Brazil, and chico sapote in Hawaii, southern California and southern Florida. In Kelantanese Malay, the fruit is called "sawo nilo" which is closer to the original name than the standard Malay "ciku". In Chinese, the name translates roughly to "ginseng fruit" (人參果), though this is also the name used for the pepino, an unrelated fruit.
තෙත් හා මැද රට කලාපයේ වගාකළ හැකි පලතුරකි.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Manilkara zapota|
- "Manilkara zapota". Germplasm Resources Information Network. United States Department of Agriculture. සම්ප්රවේශය 2009-01-29.
- "California Rare Fruit Growers, Sapodilla Fruit Facts Retrieved on 2009/03/26
- "College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources, Ten Tropical Fruits of Potential Value for Crop Diversification in Hawaii Retrieved on 2009/03/26