Called sapota or sapodilla in English, chikoo (or chiku) is a summer fruit native to India. One of my favorite fruits, I always look forward to it on each visit back home during summers! We have a few chikoo trees at home and nothing is sweeter than fruits from the trees growing in your own garden.
Actually, I am not too sure if it is native to India as I recently read that it was brought to India by the Spanish, but then I have not been able to find chikoo in any country other than India!
They are small rounds (almost the size of plums) and look very rustic with a rough brown skin and very smooth flesh. You can eat chikoo with its skin but I prefer to peel it. As they are naturally very sweet, you don’t need to add a lot of sugar in the recipe. I added very little sweetened condensed milk to give it a thick consistency and sweetness.
You can also add honey or maple syrup instead of sugar. In fact, I’m thinking of adding jaggery for sweetening, the next time I make chikoo ice cream. It will go perfectly well with the malty taste of chikoos.
Chikoo is not only deliciously different from most fruits, it also packs in a lot of nutrition.
Health benefits of Chikoo Fruit (Sapota)
- Energy Booster: The natural sweetness of chikoo comes from high levels of fructose and sucrose which can act as instant energy boosters when you need some!
- Rich in vitamins and minerals: Chikoo is a rich source of Vitamin A, B, & C and minerals like calcium, iron, folates, magnesium, potassium, selenium, etc and anti-oxidants. It is great for building immunity, healthy eyes & bones, controlling blood pressure, and treating anemia.
- High in dietary fibers: Chikoo is rich in dietary filers helping keep a healthy digestive system and reduce weight.
- Good for pregnant women: Chikoo fruit is great during pregnancy. It is not only high in nutrition required during pregnancy and lactation, it can also help in reducing morning sickness and dizziness.
Since chikoo has high levels of natural sugars, it is not recommended for people who have diabetes and certain other health conditions. Please be mindful of your health first.
Chikoo also makes delicious milkshakes and fruit smoothies. You can pair it with other sweet fruits like banana, and mango and also add it to dry fruit ice cream. The same recipe can be used to make other fruit ice creams too just use a mix of fruit pulp and chopped fruit.
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Chikoo ice cream recipe with just 4-ingredients
Ingredients (1cup = 240ml; 1tbsp = 15ml; 1tsp = 5ml)
- 200 ml full fat milk
- 400 ml milk cream
- 200 ml sweetened condensed milk
- 12 chikoo fruits (sapota fruit)
- In a heavy bottom pan, put the milk to boil on high. Once there is a boil, reduce the heat to medium and let the milk simmer for 5 mins. Keep a wooden spoon in the milk pot; this will keep the milk from spilling if it boils over.
- Remove from heat and allow to cool to room temperature.
- Meanwhile, peel and deseed the chikoos. Blend around 8 of them to a pulp and cut the remaining into small cubes.
- Once the milk has cooled down, add in milk cream, condensed milk, and chikoo pulp.
- Using a hand blender in the pot, mix everything till well combined.
- Add the mix to kulfi moulds or ice cream moulds.
- Add some chopped pieces of chikoos to each mould. Cover and freeze.
- Remove from freezer 5 mins before serving. Remove from moulds and serve cold.
- Milk adds a little lightness to the ice cream but you can skip milk altogether and use extra 100ml of cream. This way there is no cooking required!
- The same recipe can be used to make other sweet fruit ice creams too. Just use a mix of fruit pulp and chopped fruit.
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