Miracle Fruit Synsepalum dulcificum

Guess what I got!!

The Miracle Fruit (Synsepalum dulcificum) is a plant first documented by explorer Des Marchais during a 1725 excursion to its native West Africa. Marchais noticed that local tribes picked the berry from shrubs and chewed it before meals. The plant grows in bushes up to 20 feet high in its native habitat and it produces two crops per year. It is an evergreen plant with white flowers that produces small red berries. The seeds are about the size of coffee beans.Although the berry itself is not sweet, it contains an active glycoprotein molecule with some trailing carbohydrate chains called miraculin. When the fleshy part of the fruit is eaten, this molecule binds to the tongue's taste buds causing bitter and sour foods to taste sweet. This effect lasts between 30 minutes and two hours, and eating more than one fruit does not increase the intensity of the modification.

It is unfortunate that heat destroys the active principle, so that canning, jams, preserves, baking, drying, etc. are impossible. However, the fruits can be held for an indefinite period of time by refrigeration or freeze drying.

Miracle Fruit's natural sweetening power is perfect for:
* A fun twist on everyday food
* A diabetic watching sugar intake
* Picky eaters eager to add some sweetness to healthy foods
* "The Night Crowd" looking to sweeten that tequila or vodka drink
* Chemotheraphy patients having trouble eating (eliminates the bitterness)
* Healthy eaters intent on cutting out the 'crash' of a sugar high without losing the taste
* Anyone who likes making food taste sweeter/better!!!

What a cool idea! (check out the video)

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Romer!can said...

So, what was your personal experience with this fruit? Did it grow well? How did it taste to you? Were the effects merely moderate or did they really make everything taste fantastic?

I'm actually very curious, having never heard of it before.

Claudia said...

My Plant bared fruit twice last year. The first time I've tried it I felt sort of an adrenaline rush in anticipation of the outcome. In some way it's a "forbidden" fruit of which is assumed the sugar(and fake sugar) industry frowns upon. That might be the reason why this berry as well as other natural sweeteners are kept "under wraps".
The fruit itself is bland, doesn't taste much like anything neither does it have a significant content of vitamins.

But once the miraculin layers your tongue, lemons and oranges taste very sweet, Munster and Colby cheese taste like cheese cake and Brussels sprouts get a fruit flavor, Beer tastes like a chokolate shake and so on.... It's definitely a flavor trip. I recommend it if you have a sense of adventure and a sound mind ;)

R! said...

Wow, that sounds incredible. Okay, I am sold! I'll have to grow a plant and discover this for myself.

Anonymous said...

I am also growing one of these but they take ages to fruit (they have to be at least 3 years old... 2 more to go :). In the meantime, I got some of these (don't worry, you can't buy anything here, haha :) and they work just as well as the fruit itself...