Dragon fruit, also known as pitaya or pitahaya, is a fruit that originates in Central America. Famous for its oval shape and its shell with thorns, the dragon fruit has an exceptional nutritional value that makes it delicious food and full of benefits for the body. Do you want to find out everything about the pitaya? You have reached the ideal place. In a Ezhealthinsurance we not only explain the nutritional properties, benefits or medicinal uses of this rich fruit, but then we give you the best recipes for you to learn how to eat dragon fruit. Enjoy the pitahaya while you get the most out of this tasty fruit.
Dragon fruit, also popularly known as pitahaya or pitaya although in other countries receives other names, is a fruit that originates in Central America. It is a characteristic fruit for its oval shape and for its spine carcass. There are several varieties that vary the image of its pulp and its shell: the yellow pitaya on the outside and with the white meat full of seeds or the most characteristic red pitahaya on the outside and with white or red pulp with seeds. Dragon fruit is aromatic and very sweet, which makes it a delicious fruit.
As if that were not enough, the nutritional value it provides is extraordinary, as are its properties. Pitaya is rich in antioxidants, mucilages, ascorbic acid, and phenols, among others, but it stands out for being a source of vitamins (C and B), rich in minerals, having a high water content, possessing vegetable protein and containing a large amount fiber It also stands out for its antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-tumor properties.
With all this, dragon fruit is a highly beneficial food, since it acts by providing health to various areas of our body. These are the main benefits of pitaya for health :
- Strengthens the immune system.
- Stimulates the production of red, white and platelet cells.
- Its antioxidant power delays cell aging.
- Reduces the risk of heart attacks (cerebral and cardiac).
- Being a source of fiber helps regulate intestinal transit. In addition, its seeds have a laxative effect.
- Prevents kidney stones.
- Regulates blood sugar levels or glucose.
- It inhibits the growth and development of tumor cells.
- It stimulates collagen production.
- It improves the absorption of iron, so it helps fight anemia.
- Strengthens the formation of bones and teeth.
- Prevents arteriosclerosis.
- The pitahaya serves to lose weight, so it is a perfect fruit to include in a diet to lose weight in a healthy way, since being rich in water and low in carbohydrates its caloric intake is low.
- Drinking dragon fruit infusion will help reduce anxiety and stress, as well as other nervous conditions, reduce insomnia and relieve headaches or headaches.
What does dragon fruit taste like?
Many people who have not yet tried this fruit but are thinking about doing so are curious to know what the dragon or pitaya fruit tastes like. The truth is that the taste of this fruit is sweet and, in fact, it can be described as a mixture between the taste of kiwi and pear.
Therefore, if you like these other two fruits, you will surely love the pitahaya and if the sweet fruits are one of your favorites, then you will probably like this one too.
How to eat dragon fruit
Now that you know all the properties and benefits that dragon fruit brings to the body, it is imperative that you discover the best ways to consume this delicious fruit. Pitaya, like any other fruit, is usually consumed fresh. If you wonder where to buy pitahaya or dragon fruit, the answer depends on where you live. There are countries where you can find them in supermarkets, markets, and regular small food stores, however, in other countries, you will usually only find them in supermarkets and stores specializing in Asian and Latin American foods.
To consume the fresh dragon fruit, you must choose one that is ripe. You will notice that the color of its shell is bright (it will be much easier to find the red or pink ones). The more mature the fruit, the more delicious it will taste. Look to the touch if the shell is too soft, in this case, it will not be so good. In case it is very hard, we advise you to wait a couple of days before eating it.
Once you have selected your dragon fruit, cut it in half using a sharp knife. You will find its bright white pulp, similar to that of kiwi since it is also full of black seeds. With the help of a spoon take out the pulp, which will separate easily if the pitaya is ripe. And to eat! You can cut it in four or take the spoon directly to your mouth. A delight.
If you don’t want to consume the fresh dragon fruit, write down some of the best pitaya recipes.
Dragon fruit is delicious and sweet food that can become the main ingredient of a rich and nutritious smoothie. If you choose to eat dragon fruit with this option, take note of the following pitaya smoothie recipe :
- Prepare the fruit with which you will make the smoothie. We recommend that in addition to dragon fruit include blueberries, bananas, kiwi or any other fruit you like.
- Cut the pitaya and take out the pulp to cut it into small dice. Do the same with the rest of the selected fruits.
- Find a base to create the smoothie. The dragon fruit has a creamy texture so a creamy base will be ideal to match it. Opt for yogurt or milk.
- In case you like very sweet milkshakes, you can add additional ingredients such as grape or apple juice, honey, syrup or almond butter.
With all the ingredients ready, it’s time to place them in a blender to mix them until there’s a creamy and delicious dragon fruit smoothie. In case it is too thick you can soften it with juice, water or milk. If, on the other hand, you want it to be thicker, just add a teaspoon of oatmeal. Delicious and refreshing!
Fruit skewers with pitaya
Do you want to enjoy all the taste of dragon fruit? Sign up for this original and delicious recipe. We suggest you make grilled fruit skewers. The realization of this dish, ideal to enjoy a different dessert or an innovative entree, is very simple. Take note:
- Prepare the dragon fruit. Peel it, remove the pulp and cut it into taquitos. The skewer, in addition, should combine the pitaya with other tropical fruits, we recommend kiwi, mango or pineapple. Cut all selected ingredients into small pieces.
- Place the wooden sticks to soak for 10 minutes to avoid charring on the grill. In the case of using metal skewers, you can skip this step.
- Place the pieces of fruit on the skewers, alternating the selected ingredients.
- Then, put the skewers on the grill over medium-high heat and let them roast until lightly browned.
- When they are ready, sprinkle them with sugar and … Eat!
The most refreshing option that we propose to eat dragon fruit is to prepare a sorbet with it. Do you dare? It is easy!
- Peel the pitaya and remove the pulp. You can keep the peel to serve the sorbet in a different and original way.
- Make a mixture based on dragon fruit, 3/4 cups of water, 2 tablespoons of sugar and 1 tablespoon of lemon juice. The ingredients should be liquefied.
- Pour the mixture into a baking pan and place it in the freezer for 2 hours. After this time, stir the mixture with a spoon and put it back in the freezer. You should stir the frozen sorbet every two hours until 8 hours have passed since you first frozen it and then let it sit overnight in the freezer.
- After this time, you will have your sorbet ready to taste and accompany your biscuits or other doughs. Enjoy it!