Black Sapote; Scientific name: Diospyros nigra, same specie as Persimmon
Also called Chocolate persimmon.
Though commonly called black sapote, the Black Persimmon tree (Diospyros nigra) is not closely related to the mamey sapote or the white sapote. It belongs in the Ebenaceae, or ebony, family like the persimmon. The nearly round fruit, which grows to 5 inches wide, turns dark brown and very soft as it ripens. The pulp becomes almost black and is sweet and custard-like.
The tree’s thick, glossy foliage and interesting fruit has led to it being cultivated in South Florida, Hawaii, and the Philippines, outside of its native range in Central America. South Floridians often blend the pulp with milk and cinnamon and freeze it to make ice cream. In the Philippines, the fruit is served with a splash of orange juice. Throughout Mexico, the pulp is mashed and mixed with brandy or wine to make a pudding-like dessert.
The fruit season for D. digyna is just beginning. What’s your favorite recipe for this fruit?
The other name of this tree is chocolate pudding.
Top three photographs by Dave Hernandez
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