Fruit Stand: Nona

I found this curious looking fruit the last time I was at the wet market.  The shopkeeper called it a custard apple.  I took it home and tried it and I really loved it.  My family found it to be too sweet.  You know it’s pretty sweet when a five-year-old thinks it’s too sweet.

The locals call this fruit a nona.  I have since found out that it is the sweet cousin of the sirsak that we found in Indonesia.  Sirsak is called soursop in English, and I’ve heard that in parts of the world, nona, is called sweetsop.  

Custard apple seems to be a good name for the fruit.  It takes like a very sweet apple, but the texture is soft, like a custard.  You can eat this toothless, if you are, in fact, toothless.

There are big black seeds in the nona, that are similar to the big black seeds found in salak, also known as snakeskin fruit.  You do not want to eat these.  They are hard, but they come away from the fruit easily.

Nutritionally, the nona is very high in Vitamin C.  The sugar level is reported to be a “good” sugar as compared to processed sugars, and 1) doesn’t contribute to overeating, and 2) doesn’t cause insulin production spike.

The paste of the flesh of the fruit can be used for local application on ulcers, abscesses and boils. The fruit, in its unripe form, can be dried, crushed and used for treating diarrhea and dysentery.

Currently, the nona costs RM 12 at the wet market.  This is more than I usually am willing to pay, but my curiosity overcame my grip on my wallet.

Have you ever had sweetsop?  Please leave a comment below.  Feel free to add any favorite recipes to the forum.