The Miracle Fruit
Yesterday I had the privilege of not only witnessing a miracle but actually participating in one! No, I did not levitate, walk on water or turn water into wine…but I did manage to get an extremely sour orange to taste like a sugar coated candy. How? Well the miracle was Miracle Fruit.
Miracle Fruit (Synsepalum dulcificum) is a small red berry that is native to West Africa but grows well in most tropical regions.
After sucking on the pulpy seed for about a minute your taste buds are dramatically transformed so that everything that was once sour or bitter tastes extremely sweet and delicious.
The effects of Miracle Fruit are temporary but they last anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours during which time you can indulge an array of foods that will taste nothing like before. The miracle of Miracle fruit has been scientifically explained by a glycoprotein called Miraculin that coats the tongue and binds with the taste buds to act as a sweetness inducer when it comes in contact with acids.
The Miracle Fruit encounter is such a mind blowing trip that one US lawyer has created ‘Flavor Tripping’ parties to allow a group of people to come together and taste foods that they would normally not like. It’s a fun and super safe way to have an altered life experience although participants should be warned that while Miracle Fruit changes the flavour of foods it does not alter their innate qualities, so overindulging in a host of extra sour or acidic foods will still have a negative effect on the digestive system.In Japan a Miracle Fruit café offers a selection of fairly bland and low calorie desserts to dieters. With the effects of the fruit eaten before the food, these otherwise unappealing selections are rendered delicious and those craving sweetness are able to indulge without bursting their waistlines.
In the 1970’s there was an attempt to set up a company that would produce and market a product made from the active ingredients in Miracle Fruit to diabetics but the venture was allegedly squashed by the sugar industry. Today Miracle Fruit can be purchased in freeze dried form from Asia, from the Miracle Fruit Man in Fort Lauderdale or home grown by us in the Caribbean.
I just got some plants and will be cultivating them with care! I look forward to hearing from anyone who is growing Miracle fruit or has tasted it!Share this article on