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jocote de marañón

If you want to know what fruit is in season, check out the guys who sell fruit on the street. I don’t mean the roadside stands, I am talking about the brave souls who hang out at the stoplights on the major intersections, passing between cars like matadors slipping aside from the charging bull. Like matadors they entice, waving clear plastic produce bags bulging with colourful fruits.
We stopped, the vendor gestured with his bags, bored I started to look away, then, I spotted what looked like apples, no they looked like chiles, hmmm, what was that fruit? It didn’t take long for him to notice my interest.

Husband asked “¿Que tipo de fruta es?
The answer was” mamey”.
I leaned across Husband “No, no el mamey, el otro. ¿Que es y como lo usas?”.
“Marañón, haces licuado” time was getting short so he added “treinta pesos”.
I fumbled for the money, Husband passed me the fruit and off we went.
When he could take his attention off the traffic, Husband asked me what I had bought. I hemmed and I hawed and finally I admitted that I wasn´t sure. They looked really familiar and I thought that maybe they were mangosteen. I also had a second idea but I didn’t want to admit it.So before I did anything I looked those puppies up. If you click on the link, you’ll learn all about the mangosteen, including the fact that these aren’t them.
Look at the little thing on top of the fruit, it looks like a cashew. It is a cashew! I bought fresh cashews! The red psuedo fruit is called a cashew apple or in Spanish jocote de marañón. The nut shaped thing is the actual fruit.
The fruit doesn’t ship well, but you can buy the bottled juice. I am off to make my licuado de marañón.

About Theresa Diaz Gray

Born in New York City, I grew up in California, and have lived in 3 countries and 6 states. I'm a first generation Cuban-American who lives in Merida, Yucatan, Mexico. I'm committed to living an abundant and creative life and helping others do so too through DIY!


  1. Hi Blonde Gator,
    I have never heard of the peach palms. They probably don’t grow here or have another name. Dates don’t grow here because of the humidity, so maybe your fruit needs a drier climate too?
    I was feeling sorry for myself today and lamenting that no fruit grows here except…and the list got really long, so I guess I should just say that stone fruits, apples and berries don’t grow here!
    I will be sure to check out your blog.

  2. Hola Teresa!

    I found your blog while searching for Maranon recipes.

    Like you, I’m a foodie, and I am also travelling in Latin America…perhaps soon to be an ex-pat, too. We drove from Florida, and I’m currently in Costa Rica, where I found the maranons growing in the yard. While driving through Nicaragua there were many vendors selling cashews, I can’t imagine the labor that went into preparing their crop! I’ll be sure to purchase a couple of pounds on the trip back.

    I love your idea/story of buying whatever is being sold….there are “peach palms” here, which are the little nuts, for sale all over the Central Valley. Any ideas?

    Like you, I am also blogging (and was searching for info to link regarding this most unusual fruit). You can visit my blog at http://blondephotos.org/BlondeGator/

    It’s more of a journal of our travels, but I do have a “foodie” category, as well as a “flora & fauna” page. Check out the robalo in Puerto Escondido…delish!

    All the best, and happy blogging!

  3. Marie, that sounds like the sort of childhood every child should have. You certainly were lucky!

  4. Best Wishes, Marie

    when i was a little girl, i went to panama, which is where my mother is from. and my relatives had a tree in their backyard. and the fruit was very ripe and it was so juicy, but very chalky. and i say again, chalky.

    we would pinch off the seed part. build a fire, toss a screen over it, and roast them black.

    then flip the black nuts onto a board. and wait for them to cool. the shell would naturally crack a bit. and …. like pistacio, we would pick them open and eat them up !!!!

    being a kid running in a pack with cousins is ….. the best way to be a kid.

  5. Don Cuevas, welcome! Yeah, raw cashew nuts are very poisonous. It’s been awhile since I did this post, but I remember thinking that I would stick to buying my cashews already processed! Thanks for stopping by and commenting.

  6. T.I.M;
    Isn’t some element of cashews quite poisonous?

    “The true fruit of the cashew tree is a kidney or boxing-glove shaped drupe that grows at the end of the pseudocarp. The drupe develops first on the tree, and then the peduncle expands into the pseudofruit. Within the true fruit is a single seed, the cashew nut. Although a nut in the culinary sense, in the botanical sense the nut of the cashew is a seed. The seed is surrounded by a double shell containing a dermatogenic phenolic resin, anacardic acid, a potent skin irritant chemically related to the more well known allergenic oil urushiol which is also a toxin found in the related poison ivy. Some people are allergic to cashew nuts, but cashews are a less frequent allergen than nuts or peanuts.[“

    Don Cuevas

  7. wow! i’ve never seen these! would love to read about more interesting finds over in merida! also thanks for all the fabulous recipes and posts, can’t wait to make the jelly from post below, yummm! buen provecho! xo

  8. Thanks Gail! Wow, what a fantastic trip! I am jealous! Yeah, cashews sure seem like a lot of trouble, but they sure are tasty!
    Thanks for taking the time to comment.

  9. Theresa I love following your blogs.
    I knew immediately what fruit you had bought, as I recently was on a trip of a lifetime (Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, India and Dubai) and we toured a cashew factory in Thailand. It was amazing and I now understand why those little suckers cost so much. I did buy some of the juice concentrate. I also have a bottle of cashew wine from Belize that I have yet to sample. 🙂
    Thanks for sharing your recipes.

  10. Hi Theresa, sure I will trade links.I like the name of your blog btw. I just saw your blog but no place for comments or to email, so I’ll put them here. The reason your pasta didn’t turn out tastier was the total lack of salt. Chipolte is smoked and dried jalapeño, so unlikely to be found in China, I think. Dill seems unAsian too.

  11. Hi Theresa,

    This is cool, my name is Theresa too. As well I’m an expat in Beijing who has a cooking blog. I started it more for wanting to learn to cook and eat better. Although, looking at your blog, I should take some pics of the places I shop for food. I found your header picture really cool, so maybe people are interested in that.

    Anyways, I would love to trade links.


  12. Leslie, I appreciate you taking the time to comment!The marañon that we bought were very acerbic, like crab apples only stronger. I bet that they would make a good base for jelly. Jonna says that they are delicious so that leads me to believe that the ones I bought just weren’t ripe enough.

  13. I’m a new reader to your blog and a fellow expat living in Mexico. I’ve been living in Mexico for 8 years and have not yet seen a marañon. Looks very interesting. Be sure to share what it tasted like. Hopefully one day, my own recipe blog will be as wonderful as yours!!!

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