The cashew apple is often overshadowed by its famous sibling, the cashew nut. Picture biting into a juicy, tangy, and slightly sweet fruit that leaves a unique aftertaste unlike anything you’ve tasted before. That’s the cashew apple for you!
You might wonder, “Why haven’t I heard of this fruit before?” Well, the cashew apple is a bit of a diva. It doesn’t travel well and prefers to stay close to home, making it rare in most supermarkets. But if you ever get the chance to try one, it’s an experience you won’t forget.
How Do Cashew Apples Taste?
The taste of a cashew apple is a unique blend of sweet, tart, and astringent flavors. Imagine biting into a ripe apple but with a twist. A tangy punch follows the initial sweetness and then a slightly astringent aftertaste that leaves your mouth feeling dry. It’s a flavor roller coaster that keeps you coming back for more.
Types Of Cashew Apples
- Yellow Cashew Apples: These have a sweet and slightly tart taste, similar to a ripe apple with a hint of citrus.
- Red Cashew Apples: These are more astringent and less sweet than their yellow counterparts, with a flavor that’s reminiscent of tart berries.
Comparing Cashew Apples With Other Fruits
- Apples: Cashew apples are juicier and have a more complex flavor profile, blending sweet, tart, and astringent notes.
- Pears: While pears are sweet and slightly tart, cashew apples have an additional astringent flavor that sets them apart.
- Citrus Fruits: Like oranges and lemons, cashew apples have a tangy punch, but they also bring a unique sweetness and astringency to the table.
Do Cashew Apples Taste Good?
Cashew apples are a blend of sweet, tart, and astringent flavors that can be quite refreshing, especially when the fruit is fresh and ripe. The juiciness of the fruit adds to its appeal, making every bite a burst of tropical goodness.
However, the astringent aftertaste might not be for everyone. It leaves a dry feeling in the mouth, which you might find off-putting.
A fresh cashew apple is juicy and flavorful, while an overripe one can be overly astringent. So, if you’re trying one for the first time, make sure it’s fresh and ripe.
As for freezing, it’s not recommended. Freezing alters the texture and flavor of the fruit too much, making it less enjoyable.
What Does a Cashew Apple Look Like?
A cashew apple is a bell-shaped fruit that grows on the cashew tree. It’s not actually an apple, but it does resemble one in shape. The fruit is usually red or yellow and has soft, edible flesh.
The cashew nut, which is the seed of the fruit, hangs below the cashew apple, enclosed in a hard shell.
When buying cashew apples check the stem end of the fruit. If it’s shriveled or dark, the fruit might be overripe.
Remember, a fresh and ripe cashew apple is your ticket to a unique and enjoyable taste experience.
Do Cashew Apples Have Seeds?
Yes, cashew apples do have seeds, but they’re not what you might expect. The seed of the cashew apple is actually the cashew nut, which hangs from the bottom of the fruit. It’s enclosed in a hard shell that contains a toxic resin, so it’s not edible in its raw form.
The nut needs to be roasted to destroy the toxin before it can be eaten. So, while the cashew apple itself is edible and quite tasty, its seed, the cashew nut, requires careful processing before it’s safe to consume.
How To Make Cashew Apples Taste Good
There are ways to make them taste even better without adding them to recipes.
- Choose ripe fruits: A ripe cashew apple is sweeter and less astringent than an unripe one. Look for fruits that are bright in color and slightly soft to the touch.
- Chill before eating: Chilling the fruit can enhance its sweetness and make it more refreshing. Just pop it in the fridge for a few hours before you eat it.
- Pair with a sweet dip: If you find the fruit too tart, try dipping it in a sweet dip like honey or sweet yogurt. This can balance out the tartness and add an extra layer of flavor.
- Sprinkle with a pinch of salt: A little salt can help cut through the astringency and bring out the fruit’s natural sweetness. Just a pinch is enough, so don’t go overboard.
- Eat with cheese: The creaminess of cheese can complement the tartness of the cashew apple, creating a delightful flavor combination. Try it with a mild cheese like mozzarella or brie.
How To Use Cashew Apples In Recipes And Side Dishes
- Cashew Apple Jam: This is a popular way to use cashew apples. The fruit’s natural sweetness and tartness make it perfect for jam. Just cook the fruit with sugar until it reaches a jam-like consistency. Remember to remove the cashew nut before cooking!
- Cashew Apple Juice: Cashew apple juice is refreshing and packed with nutrients. Simply blend the fruit with some water and strain the mixture to get the juice. You can add sugar or honey if you find it too tart.
- Cashew Apple Chutney: This tangy and spicy condiment pairs well with grilled meats or rice dishes. Cook the fruit with spices like cumin, coriander, and chili, and blend it into a smooth chutney.
- Cashew Apple Salad: Slice the fruit and add it to your favorite salad for a burst of tropical flavor. Its tartness can balance out the flavors of sweet and savory ingredients.
- Cashew Apple Salsa: Dice the fruit and mix it with onions, cilantro, and chili for a tangy and spicy salsa. It’s a great accompaniment to grilled fish or chicken.
- Cashew Apple Pickle: This tangy and spicy side dish can add a kick to any meal.
Cashew Apple FAQs
Why aren’t cashew apples commonly found in supermarkets?
Cashew apples are delicate and spoil quickly, which makes them difficult to transport over long distances. They’re also highly perishable and have a short shelf-life, which makes them less suitable for conventional supermarkets.
How can you eat a cashew apple?
You can eat a cashew apple raw, just like an apple. However, due to its astringent aftertaste, some people prefer to use it in recipes like jams, juices, or chutneys.
How does the taste of a cashew apple compare to other fruits?
The taste of a cashew apple is unique. It’s a blend of sweet, tart, and astringent flavors, which sets it apart from most other fruits.
What is the relationship between the cashew apple and the cashew nut?
The cashew apple comes from the fruit of the cashew tree, and the cashew nut is the seed of this fruit. The nut hangs from the bottom of the apple and is enclosed in a hard shell.