passion fruit juice

Have you ever tried fresh passion fruit? I never had until a few weeks ago when a few of the kids and I stopped by a fruit stand.

“What’s that?” I asked, pointing at the box full of smooth, pale-yellow fruit. 

“Parcha,” the vendor said and then, noting my blank look, he picked one up, split it in half, and passed it to us.

The fruit looked less than impressive — a snotty mess of yellowish-orange seeds — but I bravely scooped one out with my fingers and popped it into my mouth. It was delicious! Tart and sweet, it reminded me a little of rhubarb. We swallowed the seeds whole and slurped up the juice.

Once home, I did a bunch of research and then made juice. It ended up watery (I was winging it), but it was still good enough to make me want more. 

I kept shoveling great spoonfuls of the soupy fruit into my mouth. 
The seeds are smooth and light, like the bubbles in bubble tea, or like tapioca pearls.

Turned out, passion fruit was a little harder to source than I thought it’d be. There wasn’t any in the grocery store, and when I went back to the fruit stand, they no longer had any in stock. Come back Friday, the vendor said.

Even though I had my doubts he’d actually have any, I went back again at the end of the week. Lo and behold, there it was! I bought six. At a dollar a fruit, it’s not cheap, but I didn’t even bat an eye. I was on a mission.

This time when I made the juice, I took both measurements and photos.

I don’t know if I can find passion fruit in Virginia, but if I do, I want to be prepared.

Passion Fruit Juice

1½ cups passion fruit pulp, about 4-6 passion fruit
⅓-½ cup sugar

Put the pulp into the blender along with three cups of water. Blend briefly (30 to 60 seconds) until the seeds are mostly ground up.

To remove the seeds, pour the juice through a strainer that’s been lined with a cheesecloth. Once the majority of the liquid has drained through, pull the ends of the cloth together and wring out the remainder of the juice.

Add the sugar to the juice and stir until dissolved. Add another three cups of water. Taste, and add more sugar if desired. Serve over ice. (Leftover juice will separate, so give it a brisk stir before serving.) 

This same time, years previous: the Peru post, the quotidian (8.17.15), this new season, starfruit smoothie, the beach, around the internets, drilling for sauce.


  • Anonymous

    If passion fruit are out of season when you return to the State, the brand Ceres makes a 100% passion fruit juice that is available at stores like Whole Foods. Delicious!

  • Crystal

    Yum! We ate these all the time as kids growing up in Hawaii. We call them lilikoi. My mom had lots of lilikoi vines in our yard. We mostly ate them fresh but also in desserts like lemon bars but replace the lemon juice with the lilikoi. Delicious!.
    A favorite cocktail is the Kailua Passion which is really just a rum and lilikoi juice slushie, also delicious.
    So glad you got to try this special fruit.
    I've so been enjoying reading about your time in Puerto Rico. Thanks for sharing.

    • Anonymous

      Same here! I loved the yellow hard-rind lilikoi versus the oddly sweet orange passion fruit. Some of the horses I rode learned to crunch the lilikoi squirting juice and seeds everywhere. Then the lilikoi slobbers began. Good times!

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