Get cooking with some Miami-inspired recipes from Edible South Florida!
Tropical Fruits in Homestead and the Redland
South Florida’s agricultural district known as the Redland is home to small family farms like LNB Groves and larger commercial farms that grow everything from specialty produce for Asian communities in the Northeast to winter produce, like beans, sweet corn, squash, eggplant, tomatoes and herbs, for export in the north. The stars of the south are our tropical fruits – mangos, avocados, carambola, lychees, longan, mamey sapote, sapodilla, jackfruit, dragon fruit and passionfruit, to name just a few. Look for these fruits at local farmers markets and farm stands throughout South Florida.
Find fresh roselle (Hibiscus sabdariffa) in farmers markets in November. They’re tart and ruby red, making them perfect for this version of “cranberry” sauce for the holiday
Florida Cranberry Sauce
- 4 cups fresh roselle calyxes
- 1 1/2 cup water
- 1/2 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
- 2 cups sugar
- Zest from 1 orange, chopped into fine julienne strips
Combine all ingredients except for orange zest in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer for 8-10 minutes, stirring constantly to avoid scorching. Refrigerate before serving.
Jackfruit (Artocarpus heterophyllus) are tropical trees bearing the largest fruit of all trees, each weighing as much as 80 pounds. When ripe, they taste like sweet banana and pineapple; unripe fruits have little flavor but a texture used as a meat substitute.
Green Jackfruit Curry
- 1 lb. fresh unripe jackfruit, or 1 17-oz can (packed in water, not syrup)
- 1½ cup canned coconut milk (not sweetened), divided
- 1 sprig curry leaves
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 fresh green jalapeño, chopped
- ½ teaspoon turmeric
- ½ teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon ground fennel
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup basmati rice, made according to package directions
Green jackfruit is not sweet and lacks the fruity aroma of ripe jackfruit, but its texture makes it a suitable substitute for pulled pork in barbecue, curries and stews. If you use fresh unripe jackfruit, use cooking oil on your knife, hands and cutting board because of the latex that comes out. Cut off the skin and chop the flesh into chunks. Place in a pot and cover with water. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 45 minutes, or until tender. Drain and cool. You can also find jackfruit in brine. For this recipe, make sure you don’t choose ripe (sweet) jackfruit.
Peel and clean the jackfruit. Set aside ½ cup of coconut milk. Put jackfruit, remaining coconut milk, 1 cup water and all other ingredients except for rice into a large saucepan. Bring to boil, then reduce heat and simmer until jackfruit is tender. Add the reserved coconut milk, taste to adjust seasoning, and heat for a few minutes. Serve with basmati rice.
Sapodilla (Manilkara zapota), aka nispero, chikoo or naseberry, tastes like brown sugar with a bit of pear. It must be fully ripe and soft before eating. Usually eaten in smoothies or out of hand, sapodilla does not usually lend itself to cooking – perhaps because of its latex content. But in this recipe, sapodilla turns deep red and tastes sweet and buttery.
Sapodilla Upside Down Cake
Makes 1 cake
- 4-6 large, ripe sapodillas
- 1 box golden cake mix (we used Duncan Hines Butter Golden Cake Mix)
- 10 tablespoons softened butter, divided
- ½ cup brown sugar
- ½ cup water
- ¼ cup dark rum
- 3 large eggs
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Peel sapodillas, slice in half lengthwise, and remove seeds. Cut each half into ¼” slices. Smear 9×13″ cake pan with 3 tablespoons butter, then evenly sprinkle brown sugar on top. Arrange sapodilla slices atop butter and sugar. Set aside.
Prepare cake mix according to package directions, using remaining 7 tablespoons butter, water, rum and eggs. Pour batter evenly on top of sapodilla. Bake about 25 minutes, until toothpick inserted in middle comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes, then place flat serving plate over cake and flip. Wait a few minutes before gently lifting pan off cake. Let cool. Serve alone or with ice cream.
For more recipes, visit ediblesouthflorida.com
Edible South Florida explores our foods, our stories and our community by season. As the trusted voice of the local food movement, we inspire readers to support and celebrate the growers, producers, chefs, restaurants, food and drink artisans and other culinary businesses in our community.
Images provided by Edible South Florida.