The plant is a member of the cactus family. The exact origin is unknown, but is likely from Southern Mexico through Belize, Guatemala, El Salvador and Costa Rica The fruits contain pulp with a scattering of black seeds. When ripe, the fruit peels as easily as a banana and tastes like a mixture of melon and kiwi.
Phosphorus, Vitamin C, Calcium, Iron
Cut the fruit vertically into two halves. From here, either cut the halves into watermelon-like slices, or scoop out the two white fleshy halves with a tablespoon. The skin is not eaten.
The flesh, which is eaten raw, is sweet. It is generally recommended that pitahaya should be eaten chilled, for improved flavour. Eating the fruit is sometimes compared with that of the kiwifruit due to the similar texture with small black crunchy seeds. The fruit is also converted into juice.
When to eat
When the skin is still a bit green the fruit can be ripened at room temperature. When ripe, keep refrigerated and consume within a few days.
Did you know?
The fruit can weigh from 150-600 grams; some may reach one kilogram. Pitahaya’s bloom only at night, and only last one night where pollination is necessary to set fruit. The yellow pitahaya is much sweeter than the red pitahaya.