Pouteria sapota, mamey sapote, is a species of tree native to Cuba and Central America, naturally ranging from southern Cuba to southern Costa Rica, plus Mexico. Today, the tree is cultivated not only in Cuba, but also in Central America, the Caribbean, and South Florida for its fruit, which is commonly eaten in many Latin American countries. Mamey can be found in many Latin American communities throughout the USA, where it is made into milkshakes and ice cream among other things.
Some of its names in Latin American countries, such as mamey colorado (Cuba), zapote colorado (Costa Rica) and zapote rojo (South America), refer to the reddish colour of its flesh in order to distinguish it from the unrelated but similar looking Mammea americana, whose fruit is usually called "yellow mamey" (Spanish: Mamey amarillo).
The Australian and Queensland Government’s research and development programs have produced mamey sapote in Australia.
Mamey sapote is a large and highly ornamental evergreen tree that can reach a height of 15 to 45 meters (49 to 148 ft) at maturity. It is mainly propagated by grafting, which ensures the new plant has the same characteristics as the parent, especially its fruit, as it doesn't grow true to seed. It is also considerably faster than growing trees by seed, producing fruit in three to five years; trees grown from seed require seven years of growth before fruiting. In Florida, the fruit is harvested from May to July with some cultivars available all year.
The fruit, technically a berry, is about 10 to 25 cm (4 to 10 in) long and 8 to 12 cm (3 to 4.5 in) wide and has flesh ranging in color from pink to orange to red. The brown skin has a texture somewhat between sandpaper and the fuzz on a peach. The fruit's texture is creamy and soft, the flavor is a mix of sweet potato, pumpkin, honey, prune, peach, apricot, cantaloupe, cherry, and almond. A mamey sapote is ripe when the flesh is vibrant salmon colored when a fleck of the skin is removed. The flesh should give slightly, as with a ripe kiwifruit. The leaves are pointed at both ends, 4 to 12 inches in length and grow in clusters at the ends of branches.
The mamey sapote is related to other sapotes such as sapodilla (Manilkara zapota), abiu (P. caimito) and canistel (P. campechiana), but unrelated to the black sapote (Diospyros digyna) and white sapote (Casimiroa edulis).
Mamey at a Tepoztlan market
The fruit is eaten raw or made into milkshakes, smoothies, ice cream and fruit bars. It can be used to produce marmalade and jelly. Some beauty products use oil pressed from the seed, otherwise known as sapayul oil.
The fruit is an excellent source of vitamin B6 and vitamin C, and is a good source of riboflavin, niacin, vitamin E, manganese, potassium and dietary fiber. Research has identified several new carotenoids from the ripe fruit.
- Achras mammosa Bonpl. ex Miq. nom. illeg.
- Achras zapota var. major Jacq.
- Bassia jussaei Griseb.
- Bassia jussiaei Tussac
- Calocarpum huastecanum Gilly
- Calocarpum mammosum var. bonplandii (Kunth) Pierre
- Calocarpum mammosum var. candollei (Pierre) Pierre
- Calocarpum mammosum var. ovoideum (Pierre) Pierre
- Calocarpum sapota (Jacq.) Merr.
- Calospermum mammosum var. bonplandii (Kunth) Pierre
- Calospermum mammosum var. candollei Pierre
- Calospermum mammosum var. ovoidea Pierre
- Calospermum parvum Pierre
- Lucuma bonplandiiv Kunth
- Sapota mammosa Mill.
- Sideroxylon sapota Jacq.
- Sideroxylum sapota Jacq.
- "The Plant List".
- Ecured - Mamey colorado
- Ecured - Mamey amarillo
- Morton, Julia 1987. Sapote. p. 398–402. In: Fruits of warm climates. Julia F. Morton, Miami, FL. at Center for New Crops & Plant Products, at Purdue University
- CULTIVATION OF MAMEY SAPOTE AND GREEN SAPOTE - The Rare Fruit Council of Australia
- Mamey Sapote - Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services
- Mamey Sapote - Melissa's Produce
- Mamey Sapote - CooksInfo.com
- The Tropical Fruit Growers present - Mamey Sapote
- Mamey Sapote Exotic Tropical Fruit - Cape Tribulation
- Mamey – A Tropical Miami Fruit That Should Become Mainstream - Forbes
- Mamey Sapote - LocalHarvest
- Fruit of the Month: Mamey Sapote
- Holy Moly, It’s Mamey Sapote Marta Lane March 29, 2012 - MidWeek Kaua'i
- Introducing the mamey | Alain Dubernard | Restaurant Business
- Good Enough To Eat: Soft fruits: The names and tastes vary - seattlepi.com
- Boning, Charles R. (2006). Florida’s Best Fruiting Plants: Native and Exotic Trees, Shrubs, and Vines. Sarasota, Florida: Pineapple Press, Inc. p. 139. ISBN 1561643726.
- Florida Crop/Pest Management Profile: Mamey Sapote and Sapodilla
- MAMEY SAPOTE (Pouteria sapote) - fruitipedia
- Jamieson, G. S.; McKinney, R. S. (1931). "Sapote (mammy apple) seed and oil". Oil & Fat Industries. 8: 255. doi:10.1007/BF02574575.
- Molly Chadwick (11 January 2011). "Emerald Forest® Botanical Hair Care With Rainforest Sapayul Commits to More Natural Products With Introduction of Paraben Free Shampoos And Conditioners". Encinitas, CA: PRWEB. Retrieved 29 August 2014.
Sapayul oil comes from the seeds of Sapote, a fruit indigenous to the Central American rainforests and an ancient Mayan secret for beautiful, soft, and shiny hair.
- Anita Grant (14 December 2006). "Organic Sapote Seed Oil (inci: Pouteria Sapota, Zapote, Mamey Sapote, Zapayul, Sapayul)". anitagrant.com's photostream. Flickr. Retrieved 25 August 2011.
Organic Sapote Seed Oil (inci: Pouteria Sapota, Zapote, Mamey Sapote, Zapayul, Sapayul)
The seed is used in the Caribbean island of Grenada as a flavoring for cakes.
- Murillo E, McLean R, Britton G, Agócs A, Nagy V, Deli J (2011). "Sapotexanthin, an A-provitamin carotenoid from red mamey (Pouteria sapota)". J Nat Prod. 74 (2): 283–5. doi:10.1021/np1006982. PMID 21214217.
- Gulyás-Fekete G, Murillo E, Kurtán T, Papp T, Illyés TZ, Drahos L, Visy J, Agócs A, Turcsi E, Deli J (2013). "Cryptocapsinepoxide-Type Carotenoids from Red Mamey, Pouteria sapota". J Nat Prod. 76 (4): 607–14. doi:10.1021/np3007827. PMID 23451823.
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