Another superfruit from the Amazon, Camu camu, also known as Cacari and Camocamo, is a small bushy riverside tree from the Amazon rainforest in Peru and Brazil, which bears a red/purple cherry-like fruit. Its small flowers have waxy white petals and a sweet-smelling aroma.
Documentation of traditional Camu camu uses is scarce. Camu camu has a unique aroma and fruit pigmentation. A reddish pigment in the leathery skin imparts an attractive and unique pink color on juices extracted from it. The aroma is subtle, but is not as captivating as in more popular fruits.
Camu camu has an extraordinarily high vitamin C content. It has more Vitamin C than any other fruit. Vitamin C content declines as full maturity is reached, and there is a trade-off between vitamin C and flavor expression. Camu Camu also contains a few amino acids and flavonoids.
The fruit is extremely acidic, and the flavor can only be appreciated in recipes requiring a blender, dilution in milk/water and the addition of sugar. Camu camu is more recently used in ice cream and drinks.
Processed powder from the fruit pulp is beginning to be sold as a health food in loose powder or capsule form. It is a great addition to smoothies.
Image from http://bioweb.uwlax.edu/bio203/s2008/kerr_cass/nutrition.htm
Camu Berry Lemonade
2 Tbsp. Camu Camu Powder
1/2 Tbsp. Agave Syrup
1/3 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
2 Tbsp agave nectar
1 quart water
1. In a blender, combine all ingredients and briefly blend.
2. Add additional sweetener, if desired, to taste.
3. Chill before serving.
Vitamin C Boost Smoothie
2 tsp. Camu Camu Powder
3 cups freshly squeezed orange juice
1 cup frozen mango
1/2 cup strawberries
1/4 cup Goji Berries, soaked
1 scoop vanilla protein powder
2 tsp. Chia Seeds
1 Tbsp. flax oil
1. Soak goji berries in 1/2 cup of water for 20 mins to help soften them.
2. Combine all ingredients, including goji berry soaking water and blend until smooth.
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