48 X 48 Coffee Table – In a previous entry we presented the Ecuador Chair together with a summary of all the research and development of two Ecuadorian products, the plant (musa paradisiaca) and physalis (physalis peruviana l.). On this occasion we will present only one of those products which is physalis or uvilla as it is called in the language of its country of origin, Ecuador.
Uvilla (physalis peruviana l.) is a plant of the Solanaceae family and its fruits grow and ripen inside its shell. Its origin is unknown but it is believed to be in the Andes of South America such as Peru (Leggue, 1974), Brazil (CRFG, 1997) and Ecuador (Bartholomaus et al., 1990).
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Mainly, we find it in the tropical region of America, Antilles and Australia. According to some sources, the main uvilla producing countries are Colombia, South Africa, New Zealand, Kenya, India, Italy, Argentina, South Africa, United Kingdom, Canada, Mexico, Dominican Republic, Honduras and Peru. Globally, the main exporting countries are: Zimbabwe, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Kenya, South Africa, Peru, Bolivia and Mexico. (Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Climate and Fisheries, 2011, Ecuador, FAO 1982).
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The genus “physaloides” consists of 90 to 100 species (D`Arcy, 1991; Martínez, 1998) and one of them that is eaten today is physalis peruviana, also known as guchuba, uchuva, uvilla, kefçi or Andean cherry. to know.
It is a fruit that is considered a “functional food” because it has immuno-stimulant, anti-cancer, antibacterial, antiviral and diuretic properties according to Harman (2004). In addition, medicinal properties such as purifying the blood, reducing albumin in the kidneys, eliminating throat problems, strengthening the optic nerve, clearing cataracts and controlling amebiasis are offered to it (Corporación Colombia Internacional, Universidad de los Andes and Ministry of National Planning, 1994). ). It is a source of provitamin A and vitamin C (Herman, 1994b).
Internally we work intensively on fermentation. Therefore, the first step was to order the uvillas for subsequent analysis through surveys conducted on a number of 100 people, both experts in the gastronomy sector and real consumers. Tastings have been of an effective type with the simple purpose of obtaining a positive or negative response regarding the acceptance of the bitter fruit.
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We are inspired by the Japanese technique and custom of fermenting fruit with lactic acid, such as the famous “umeboshi”. The word “ume” or Japanese almond is actually a bush (prunnus mume, armeniaca mume) which literally translates to “dry plum”. Umeboshi is traditionally used to make umeshu macerated drink with umeboshis.
In the case of umeboshi, it is a Japanese almond that is grown in early summer when it changes color from green to yellow and preserved for several months in salting with lactic fermentation. They are then dried in the sun and left to dry. They are usually red in color because they are soaked in red shiso leaves, but they are also available without shiso. The most common way to drink them in Japan is in a cup of bacha tea, dipped in tempura or, most importantly, on a bowl of rice (hinomau bento, which refers to the Japanese flag). (Hosking, R., 2001)
The aim of this development is to use fermented physalis as a Japanese product called “umeboshi” with great gastronomic value, and to distribute it as a new Andean product for the market all over the world.
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It is called the cellular process in which glucose is used to obtain energy, in which glucose is partially oxidized and the residual product is lactic acid, traditionally in the production of dairy products such as yogurt, viili, creme fraiche, lambic-type is used in beer as well as vegetables and fruits such as pickles, kimchi or umeboshi.
Lactic fermentation takes place in three stages; Initially, anaerobic bacteria such as Klebsiella and Enterobacter are more active in fermentation, creating a favorable acidic environment for other bacteria. The second phase begins when the environment is too acidic for most bacteria and mesenteroids of Leuconostoc and other Leuconostoc spp. they control In the third stage, various Lactobacillus digest the remaining sugar and lower the pH.
These bacteria have the great characteristic of halophily, unlike many other microorganisms that die in salty conditions, so lactic fermentations are always dependent on the percentage of salt, we always have at least 2 – 3% salt talking about with the total weight of the object to be fertilized. In this case, in addition to creating a favorable environment for lactic bacteria to live in, salt removes water from the products by osmosis, accelerating fermentation. In the case of “umeboshi” it is traditionally made with 20%-25% salt, but they can be found in the market at 4%.
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Traditionally, for this type of fermentation, glass or wooden vessels are used, always taking care to completely cover the product with liquid to prevent the product from coming into direct contact with oxygen, but it has an aerobic fermentation, so A vacuum bag is now used (always allowing oxygen) to facilitate handling.
Different concentrations of salt were tested: 2%, 3% and 6%, this ratio was chosen because it was acceptable in fermented products and previous tests. All in a vacuum bag made of 85% vacuum.
The fermentation was carried out for 2 months in a refrigerator at a temperature of 4ºC, this was done because in experiments with other products, the implementation of cold fermentation provided better results from the organoleptic point of view, improving the taste and aroma.
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Tests made with a high amount of salt are too salty for us and most of the special taste of physalis is hidden behind the intensity of the salt. Tests with a lower amount of salt are better accepted. In addition, the first tests can be used after soaking and salting the product, insisting that part of its taste and smell is lost in this soaking.
We can say that fermented uvilla can be used in the same way as “umeboshi” as a part of garnish, sauce, etc., or as a simple dish due to its very similar characteristics of acidity and saltiness. In this section, if we distinguish the fermented product from the fermentation liquid extracted from the uvilla, a clear and salty liquid that can be used as any fermented sauce, any preparation such as dressings, sauces, sauces, marinades, etc.
After several months of fermentation product development and various organoleptic and consumer tests, we found that the most acceptable was 3% salt, with 80% acceptance in the product’s approval tasting that took place on 100 people, another level of salt 6% and 8% if they are accepted at a lower rate, at least 12% is accepted.
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This opens up great possibilities for us in different lactic fruits. We have already tested different fruits and vegetables looking for other uses for lactic acid fermentation, in these cases there are very good food and gastronomic results for use in restaurants and everyday.
– ALVARES, GILBERTO LAWS; CAMPOVERDE VIVANCO, GENNY; ESPINOSA MEJIA, MARCO; Technical permit for planting uvilla (physalis peruviana L.) in Loja. Loja, Ecuador, 2012.
– FISHER, GERARD; MARTINEZ, ORLANDO. The quality and maturity of Cape Gooseberry (physalis peruviana L.) is related to the color of the fruit. National University of Colombia, Santa Fe de Bogota. 1999
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– FISHER, GERARD; MIRANDA, DIEGO; WILSON PIEDRAHITA, JORGE ROMERO. Developments in cultivation, post-harvest and export of cowpea (physalis peruviana L.) in Colombia. National University of Colombia, Faculty of Agronomy, Bogotá, 2005. ISBN: 958-701-603-3.
– JUNTAMAY TENEZACA, ELVIA ROCIO. Nutritional evaluation of dehydrated cape gooseberry (physalis peruviana L.) in three batches using a tray dehydrator. Riobamba, Ecuador, 2010.
– MINISTRY OF CREATION, INDUSTRY AND INDUSTRY, GENERAL COORDINATION OF THE NATIONAL INFORMATION SYSTEM; DIRECTORATE OF RESEARCH AND MULTISECTORAL DATA DISTRIBUTION (DIGDM). Economic agroecological landscape of uvilla (physalis peruviana L.) cultivation in mainland Ecuador. Quito, Ecuador, 2014.
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– MINISTRY OF FOREIGN TRADE, ADMINISTRATION OF COMMERCIAL INSTITUTION AND INVESTMENTS. Monthly Foreign Trade Bulletin Page 16. 2013.
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