Hawaii Grown Fruit of the Month – Lilikoi

Welcome to our third blog in the “Hawaii Grown Fruit of the Month” series. If you missed the post about Rambutan last month click here.

This month we take a look at the sweet and tart “Lilikoi!”

What is Lilikoi:
Lilikoi is sometimes called Passion Fruit. Here on the Hawaiian islands we are fortunate to have 3 varieties of Lilikoi available to us. Most common is Yellow, it has a slightly thicker tough smooth exterior skin than the others and is a wee bit larger in size. We also have purple lilikoi, similar in size to the yellow, both have a smooth outer skin and Jamaican Lilikoi with is almost fuzzy textured exterior skin and slightly cloudy colored liquid fruit inside.

Where to get Lilikoi:
Get your Lilikoi at Roadside fruit stands, Grocery stores, Farmers Markets, From a friend or be the friend that shares the Lilikoi!

When to Harvest Lilikoi:
Lilikoi grows on a rapid growing climbing vine that drops sweet or sometimes tart gifts of fruit. The fruit has a longer shelf life than many other tropical fruits and even when the skin looks dented, discolored and a bit ugly the gel like fruit inside may still be perfectly edible and sweet… or tart.

How to eat Lilikoi:
First of all, know what to expect when opening the lilikoi for the first time. It is liquid magic with lots of dark colored seeds. Cut or bite a circle into the outer skin of the fruit to make an opening big enough to either slurp or spoon out the insides. The edible part of the lilikoi looks like juicy pulp capsules with seeds in them, it’s okay try it! Eat the pulp, seeds and all.

Why is Lilikoi worth eating:
Lilikoi is an immune booster, and is packed with vitamin C. Rich in riboflavin (Vitamin B6) and Niacin. This exotic fruit helps in regulating thyroid activity in our bodies. Lillikoi is loaded with potassium and is low in sodium. The high potassium content helps our bodies maintain a healthy blood pressure, reducing the strain on the heart.