Mid Century Lane Coffee Table – In a previous entry we have presented the Ecuadorian Chair together with a summary of all the research and development of two Ecuadorian products, plantain (musa paradisiaca) and physalis (physalis peruviana l.). On this occasion, only one of the products, the physalis or the uvilla, as it is colloquially known, in their country of origin, Ecuador.
The uvilla (physalis peruviana l.) is a plant belonging to the Solanaceae family and its fruit grows and ripens inside its calyx. Its origin is not clear but it is believed to be in the Andes in 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 zone of America, the Antilles and Australia. According to some sources, the main uvilla producing countries are Colombia, South Africa, New Zealand, Kenya, India, Italy, Argentina, South Africa, the United Kingdom, Canada, Mexico, the Dominican Republic, Honduras and Peru. Worldwide, the main exporting countries are: Zimbabwe, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Kenya, South Africa, Peru, Bolivia and Mexico. (Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Aquaculture and Fisheries, 2011, Ecuador, FAO 1982).
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The genus of “physaloides” includes 90 to 100 species (D`Arcy, 1991; Martínez, 1998) and one of the edible ones today is the physalis peruviana, also known as guchuba, uchuva, uvilla, cape gooseberry or andean cherry.
It is a fruit that is considered a “functional food” because according to Harman (2004) it has immunostimulating, anticancer, antibacterial, antiviral and diuretic properties. In addition, medicinal properties such as purifying the blood, reducing albumin in the kidneys, relieving throat problems, strengthening the optic nerve, cleaning cataracts and controlling amebiasis are contributed to it (Corporación Colombia Internacional, Universidad de los Andes and the National Planning Department, 1994). It is a source of provitamin A and vitamin C (Herman, 1994b).
Inside we work intensively on fermentations. Therefore, the first development was to ferment uvillas to be analyzed later through surveys carried out on a total of 100 people, professionals in the gastronomy sector and real consumers. The tasting has been of an affective type with the simple aim of ensuring a positive or negative response in terms of receiving the fermented fruit.
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We have been inspired by the Japanese technique and practice of lactic fermentation of fruit, such as the well-known “umeboshi”. The word “ume” or Japanese apricot is actually a plum (prunnus mume, armeniaca mume) which is the literal translation “dry plum”. Umeboshi is traditionally used to make ummeshu macerated liquor with umeboshis.
In the case of umeboshi, it is a Japanese apricot that is cultivated in early summer when it starts to change its color from green to yellowish and is preserved through lactic fermentation during curing for a few months. They are then dehydrated in the sun and kept semi-dry. They are usually red in color because they are fermented with red shiso leaves, but they also exist without shiso. The most common way to eat them in Japan is a cup of te bacha, desalted in tempura or, most significantly, on top of a bowl of rice (hinomau bento, referring to the Japanese flag). (Hosking, R., 2001)
The objective of this development is to obtain a fermented physalis similar to a Japanese product called “umeboshi” of great gastronomic value, promoting its use and dissemination as a new marketable Andean product throughout the world.
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It is called a cellular process where glucose is used for energy, where glucose is partially oxidized and where the waste product is lactic acid, traditionally used in the production of dairy products mainly as yogurt, viili, creme fraiche, lambic-type beer as well as vegetables and fruit such as sauerkraut, kimchi or umeboshi.
Lactic fermentation takes place in three stages; Initially, anaerobic bacteria such as Klebsiella and Enterobacter act more strongly during fermentation, producing a favorable acidic environment for the next bacteria. The second stage begins when the environment is too acidic for most bacteria and Leuconostoc mesenteroides and other Leuconostoc spp. they take control In the third stage various Lactobacillus ferment any remaining sugar and lower the pH.
These bacteria have the great characteristic of being halophilic, unlike many other microorganisms that die in saline conditions, that’s why lactic fermentations have always been associated with salt percentages, we always talk for a minimum of 2% – 3% salt in relation. to the total weight of what is going to be fermented. In this case, as well as producing a selective environment for the lactic bacteria to live in, the salt removes the water from the products by osmosis, speeding up the fermentation. In the case of “umeboshi” it is traditionally made with 20%-25% salt, but they can be found on the market at 4%.
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Traditionally, for this type of fermentation, glass or wooden jars are used, always taking care that the product is completely covered with liquid to prevent the product from being in direct contact with oxygen, but it has an aerobic fermentation , which is why vacuum bags are currently used (always leaving oxygen) to facilitate handling.
Different percentages of salt were tested: 2%, 3% and 6%, this range was chosen because in fermented products and previous tests they were accepted as salt ranges. All were made in a vacuum bag with 85% vacuum.
The fermentation was carried out in a refrigerator at 4ºC for 2 months, it was done in this way because in tests with other products, carrying out the cold fermentation gave better results from an organoleptic point of view, improving taste and aroma.
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The tests made with a higher amount of salt are too salty for us and much of the specific flavor of the physalis is hidden behind the density of the salt. The tests with less salt were better accepted. However, the first tests can be used after soaking and desalting the product, requiring that part of its flavor and aroma is lost in this soaking.
We could say that the fermented uvilla can be used in the same way as the “umeboshi” due to its very similar acidity and salinity characteristics, as part of a garnish, sauces, etc., or as a simple snack. In this part, if we distinguish the fermented product from the fermentation liquid that is extracted from the uvilla, a transparent and salty liquid that can be used like any fermented sauce, improving any preparation such as dressings, broths, sauces, marinades, etc.
After several months of development of the fermented products and different organoleptic and consumer tests, we found that the most accepted salt was 3% salt, with 80% accepted in a product acceptance tasting carried out on 100 people , other percentages of salt such as 6% and 8% if they were received in a smaller amount, which is the least received 12%.
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This opens up great possibilities for us in different lactic fermented fruits We have already tried different fruits and vegetables looking for other uses for lactic acid fermentation, in these cases getting very good nutritional and gastronomic results for use in restaurants and on a daily basis.
– BOXES ALVARES, GILBERTO; CAMPOVERDE VIVANCO, GENNY; ESPINOSA MEJIA, MARCO; Technical Manual for the cultivation of uvilla (physalis peruviana L.) in Loja. Loja, Ecuador, 2012.
– FISHER, GERARD; MARTINEZ, ORLANDO. Cape Gooseberry (physalis peruviana L.) quality and maturity in relation to fruit colour. National University of Colombia, Santafe de Bogota. 1999.
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– FISHER, GERARD; MIRANDA, DIEGO; WILSON PIEDRAHITA, JORGE ROMERO. Growth in cultivation, post-harvest and export of saffron (physalis peruviana L.) in Colombia. National University of Colombia, Faculty of Agronomy, Bogotá, 2005. ISBN: 958-701-603-3.
– JUNE TENEZACA, ELVIA ROCIO. Nutritional evaluation of dehydrated cape gooseberry (physalis peruviana L.) at three temperatures using a tray dehydrator. Riobamba, Ecuador, 2010.
– MINISTRY OF AGRICULTURE, LIVESTOCK AND FISHERIES, GENERAL COORDINATION OF THE NATIONAL INFORMATION SYSTEM; DIRECTION OF RESEARCH AND MULTI-DATA DATA PRODUCTION (DIGDM). Economic agroecological zones for the cultivation of uvilla (physalis peruviana L.) in continental Ecuador. Quito, Ecuador, 2014.
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– MINISTRY OF FOREIGN TRADE, COMMERCIAL INFORMATION AND INVESTMENTS DIRECTORATE. Foreign Trade Monthly Bulletin Page 16. 2013 .
Andes Scientific article Aspergillus oryzae lactic acid bacteria fermented beverages yacón drink Bellota Bolivia Coffee based Caffeine Barley Horsetail Ecuador Equisetum arvense Spanish Peninsula Fermentation Formation Gusstu GustuLAB Wild herb ice cream IJGFS koji Kombucha malus sylves Neryste wild apple Miso enterprise matter Roqueritz Muquebur cheese Derwen waste Sandor Katz SCOBY Sempio Sustainability Symposium Cultivation of green tea Urtica dioica study tour In a previous post we have presented the Ecuadorian Chair together with a summary of all the research and development of two Ecuadorian products, plantain (musa paradisiaca) and the physalis (physalis). peruviana L.). On this occasion we will present only one of the products, namely the physalis or the uvilla, as it is colloquially known, in its country of origin, Ecuador.
The uvilla (physalis peruviana l.) is a plant belonging to the Solanaceae family and its fruits grow