Chocoholics Have no Fear, Chocolate Pudding Fruit is Here

By Anupum Pant

I’ve heard of all sorts of fruits. But this is something I came across just yesterday and I think it is worth mentioning. I bet you haven’t heard of it too. This fruit is called the Black Sapote (the scientific name is Diospyros digyna, in case you need it) also known as the Chocolate pudding fruit or Black persimmon.

Description: The chocolate pudding fruit or Black sapote (not related to the more common mamey sapote) is an apple sized, olive-green colored fruit found in eastern Mexico and Central America. When ripe, it turns from bright green to a lighter shade of green. At this stage it is plucked and allowed to soften for 3-6 days. After it is allowed to soften, the skin turns brownish and the fruit becomes very soft. Now, when it is cut, a smooth and silky textured brown colored chocolate like pulp is obtained from the inside.

Although Black Sapote is slightly larger, It looks a lot similar to the apple like fruit that grows in the world’s most dangerous tree.

Taste and Recipes: Not that I’ve eaten it. Still it is interesting to know that the fruit might or might not have seeds, is delicious and tastes very close to chocolate pudding. The texture is free from any gains and feels smooth in the mouth like papaya. It is often used as a substitute for chocolate in milkshakes, ice-creams, smoothies and juices to impart a creamy rich chocolate color and flavour. It is also mixed with orange juice and served with cream. Other times it is mixed with wine, brandy, cinnamon and sugar.

Health and Fitness: For chocolate addicts, this fruit is actually very healthy. Mostly because it does not fatten you – it is low in fat. At the same time the fruit is pretty rich in Vitamin C. One fruit is said to normally contain four times as much as Vitamin C as an Orange! I don’t have to tell you that Oranges are known for their Vitamin C content.

I wonder why it doesn’t grow in India. The climate pretty much suits it! Or do you have it in India too?

Article In a sentence: There exists a fruit that goes by the name of Black Sapote or “chocolate pudding fruit”. It  tastes, looks and feels a lot like chocolate pudding, is actually low in fat and has about four times as much Vitamin C as an Orange. [Video]

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Stay Away From The World’s Most Dangerous Tree

By Anupum Pant


Today we talk about Manchineel – An evil tree that is found in Florida, Caribbean and several other places around it. It holds the Guinness book of world record for the most dangerous tree, and you have a fair reason to stay at least ten feet away from it, if you ever go on a vacation to Florida, Caribbean or other nearby places.

What can it do?

  • Touch any part of this tree, its bark, leaves, fruits etc, and you’ll be left with serious blisters on your skin. The blisters will come with an excruciating pain that even after being treated by a doctor will continue to trouble you for several days. That’s not all.
  • If anything from this tree goes into your eyes, by anything I mean, even the rain water that touches the plant, you could end up with the kind of pain you’d have never experienced or could even make you go blind.
  • Swallowing a part of its little apple-like fruit will ensure that you get painful blisters on the internal walls of your mouth and throat. Try eating the complete, sweet smelling and pleasant tasting fruit and it will easily kill you. In fact in Spanish they call it manzanilla de la muerte; meaning – the little apple of death.
  • Try to get rid of it by breaking its branches or cutting the trunk and it will squirt its sap on your skin, inflicting you with the painful long-lasting blisters once again.
  • Try burning it down, while turning into ash, it will ensure that the smoke it exudes, makes you and others standing near it, go blind.

Is this tree any useful?

Yes. The Indians that used to live around the Caribbean used the sap derived from the plant to poison their darts and arrows. Also, they used the stump of this tree to tie up invaders. It killed them within a few hours.

How to avoid?

Pretty easy! The identified trees all around the region are marked with a red sign board that clearly tells you to stay away. So, do that.
In case you find a wild unmarked tree, stay away from anything that has leaves which look like shiny apple-tree-leaves and bears a deliciously sweet-smelling yellow/green little-apple like fruit.

Fun facts:

  • Despite having a bad name for its poisonous parts, there is an animal that can eat its fruit without experiencing any ill effects – A land crab found in the region. [Source]
  • In the Telugu language, Manchineel means something that can never be related to a tree which turns the water to poisoned water. Manchineel translates to – pure water or potable water in Telugu.