Perhaps it’s because I’m from a temperate climate, but I love tropical fruits. Whether it’s pineapple, star fruit, longan or mangosteen, they carry an irresistible exotic allure. My absolute favorite though is passion fruit. Cool name aside, these ugly ducklings may not look like much, but split one open and you’ll be greeted by a vibrant orange pulp and jet black seeds that make the fruit look like it came from another planet.
And then there’s the fragrance. Refreshing, fruity and floral, passion fruit has an intoxicating perfume that captivates your olfactory senses. The bracing tartness can be a little intense, but that’s what makes it so perfect for sweet things like Pavlova.
When they’re on sale, I usually pick up a bunch and make a passion fruit syrup, but this time, I also had some very ripe mangoes on hand and decided to make a preserve. Because the mangoes are so sweet, you only need a bit of additional sugar, and adding a vanilla bean takes this simple preserve to another level. I like leaving the crunchy seeds in, but, if you prefer a smoother texture, just pass the finished preserves through a sieve to remove the seeds.
As for what to do with it, this was amazing on scones, but they’d be equally good on pancakes, crepes, yogurt or ice cream, and I can even imagine using it in a sauce for a savory dish.
Passion Mango Preserve
- 2 mangos, peeled and chopped (mangos about 530 grams each)
- 1 cup passion fruit pulp (5-6 passion fruits)
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 vanilla bean
- 1 tablespoon potato starch
- 1 tablespoon water
- Put the mango in a blender and puree. Pour this mixture into a pot along with the passion fruit pulp and sugar.
- Slice the vanilla bean in half lengthwise, and split open the pod. Use the back of your knife to scrape the beans out, and add them to the pot with the mango and passion fruit.
- Bring the mixture to a boil, stirring constantly to prevent burning. Taste and add more sugar if you want it sweeter.
- Mix the potato starch with a tablespoon of water and pour this into the pot while stirring.
- Let it cook until it reaches your desired consistency (keep in mind it will thicken some more when it's cool).
- Let the preserve cool and store in an airtight container in the fridge.
Marc Matsumoto is a culinary consultant and recipe repairman who shares his passion for good food through his website norecipes.com. For Marc, food is a life long journey of exploration, discovery and experimentation and he shares his escapades through his blog in the hopes that he inspires others to find their own culinary adventures. Marc’s been featured in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today, and has made multiple appearances on NPR and the Food Network.