Synonyms and local names.
Sarambola, starfruit - in English; carambolier -by French; carambolero - in Spanish; karamarak, kamaranga - in Indii.Karambola is a vegetable in the form of green and plum fruit with flavor - in a mature state.
Origin and Distribution.
In the wild carambola is found in the forests of Indonesia. It is believed that his homeland - the Moluccas. Carambola cultivars bred in India, southern China, Indonesia, Vietnam, Philippines, United States (Florida).
The botanical characteristics.
Carambola (Averhoa carambola) is included in the genus Averhoa L. sorrel family, oxalic (Oxalidaceae). The closest relative of carambola - Redwood sorrel (Oxalis acetosella L.), growing in the coniferous forests of Europe and Asia. Tree height from 5 to 12 m with drooping branches. Pinnate leaves 10-12 cm long. Flowers are small, pink or purplish-red.
Carambola fruits fleshy 6-12 cm long. Their size - from egg to a large orange. Mature fruits amber-yellow or golden-yellow color. In form they are unusual, like a miniature ribbed airship. On cross-section - a five-pointed star, hence one of the names in English - star fruit, ie. E. Fruit-star, star fruit.
Peel carambola edible. The flesh is juicy, slightly spicy. In some varieties of fruit reminiscent of juicy meaty pea pod, other fruit acid. Some varieties taste resembles the taste of plum fruit, apples and grapes at the same time, the other - a gooseberry-scented plum. In the tropics, more valued carambola with acidic fruits.
Energy content of 100 g edible portion of the fruit carambola - 35-45 calories. Organic acids are represented mainly oxalic. The mineral composition of the fruit contains the calcium, phosphorus, iron, sodium, potassium. Vitamin complex carambola consists of vitamin C, beta-carotene, vitamins B1, B2 and B5.
Use in folk medicine.
On the healing properties carambola little is known. In folk medicine, Asian medical purposes use the leaves and flowers of carambola.
Side effects, contraindications.
The presence of large amounts of oxalic acid in acidic fruit carambola calls for caution in the use of the fruits of carambola food suffering enterocolitis, gastritis, gastric ulcer and duodenal ulcer in the acute stage. The use of acidic fruits in large quantities can lead to disruption in the body of salt metabolism and the development of renal disease.
Buying and storing.
Buy delicate fruit carambola, check the level of their maturity. Selected undamaged enough solid results. Color of the skin can be very diverse: from yellow-green to apricot. Ripe fruit can be stored in the refrigerator for up to two weeks. At room conditions the fruits ripen.
Use, serving etiquette.
Green fruit carambola is used as a vegetable, they are salted and pickled. Mature fruits are eaten fresh, they have a refreshing taste. They are served for dessert. The fruit does not need to be cleaned, it is enough to slice. They are also suitable for the preparation of fruit smoothies, salads, juices, jams, sauces. Carambola juice quenches thirst. The fruits of carambola, sliced-star - beautiful decoration for fruit, mixed salads, ice cream and so on. D.
Acidic fruit carambola juice, which contains oxalic acid, remove stains from clothing. The fruit pulp is polished copper and brass products. Sour flowers in Southeast Asia, added to salads.
Growing carambola at home.
Freshly harvested plants are propagated by seed and layering. Sowing is carried out in February mikroteplichke. Grown seedlings are seated in 9-cm pots. For the grown plants use the soil - "Terra Vita" and vermiculite in equal parts.
Winter carambola contain bright rooms with a temperature below 16 В° C, watered moderately. Young plants are transplanted each year. Bears fruit carambola with 3-4 years of age. Adult specimens bloom several times a year.