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Custard-apple fruit
Custard-apple fruit
Plant Info
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Division: Magnoliophyta
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Class: Magnoliopsida
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Order: Magnoliales
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Family: Annonaceae
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Genus: Annona
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Species: A. reticulata
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Binomial name
Annona reticulata
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Type Species

In some regions of the world, custard-apple is another name for sugar-apple, a different plant in the same genus.

The Custard-apple (Annona reticulata), known in English as bullock's heart or bull's heart, and in Hindi as sitaphal or Sita's fruit, is a species of Annona, native to the tropical New World, preferring a low elevation, and a warm, humid climate. It also occurs as feral populations in many parts of the world including India, Australia and Africa. It is a small deciduous or semi-evergreen tree reaching 10 m tall. The leaves are alternate, simple, oblong-lanceolate, 10-15 cm long and 5-10 cm broad. The flowers are produced in clusters, each flower 2-3 cm across, with six yellow-green petals.

The fruit is variable in shape, ranging from a symmetrical globose to heart shaped, oblong or irregular. The size ranges from 7-12 cm. When ripe, the fruit is brown or yellowish, with red highlights and a varying degree of reticulation, depending on variety. The flavor is sweet and pleasant, but inferior to that of the cherimoya or sugar-apple. The latter fruit is sometimes confused with this species.

Fatty-acid methyl ester of the seed oil meets all of the major biodiesel requirements in the USA (ASTM D 6751-02, ASTM PS 121-99), Germany (DIN V 51606) and European Union (EN 14214).

A similar fruit, the sugar-apple (Annona squamosa), is also called the sweetsop or, in Vietnamese, mãng cầu.

In Britain Custard-apple refers to cherimoya (Annona cherimola).

Nutritional Information

Custard apples are a well-balanced food having protein, fibre, minerals, vitamins, energy and little fat[citation needed]. They are an excellent source of Vitamin C, a good source of dietary fibre, a useful source of Vitamin B6, magnesium and potassium, and with some B2 and complex carbohydrate[citation needed].

100g of flesh will provide over 110% of the recommended daily allowance of Vitamin C and as even a small custard apple will weigh around 250grams then there is no need for supplements to obtain your vitamin C intake if eaten daily[citation needed]. Very little vitamin C is stored in the body so it should be taken in every day and as it is lost from food in cooking then fresh food is best. Vitamin C is also an anti-oxidant and as anti-oxidants help to neutralize unstable substances, known as free radicals, that can damage cells.[citation needed]

Custard apples are also a good food source of potassium which is most effective in the presence of Vitamin B6 which is also in useful supply in custard apples[citation needed].

Custard apples are also a good food source of copper[citation needed].



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