Characteristics of the tropical pitaya fruit
The pitaya is a very exquisite exotic fruit, also called dragon fruit.
It is characterised by an elongated flame shape and is covered with a rough shell covered with leaves or scales. The flesh of the pitaya is red or white in colour, depending on the variety, and is full of seeds. Pitaya is rich in vitamins and minerals, and also contains antioxidants.
In general, pitayas are large in size. Their pulp has a soft and smooth texture and a sweet taste.
Pitaya types that exist
At Huerta de Pancha, we have three types of pitayas for you to enjoy at home. The three types have the same growing characteristics.
In Huerta de Pancha we sell up to three different types of pitayas. The white pitaya is the most common, its exterior is red with green scales, and its interior is white with seeds. The red pitaya has the same exterior appearance as the white pitaya, but its interior is red, also with black seeds. Finally, mini pitayas are fruits of the red pitaya variety, but are harvested before they are fully grown. This means having the taste of a large pitaya concentrated in a smaller size.
The best way to consume this fruit is to cut it in half with a knife and, with a spoon, scoop out the pulp little by little.
How you will receive the Huerta de Pancha’s pitayas
Our pitayas are harvested at their optimum point. This point is not the same as the ripening point. It is not necessary to wait for a period of time to eat the pitayas, as they are ready to eat. Our pitayas can be white or red and always of good size. Pitaya is a fragile fruit, so we always try to pack them as well protected as possible to avoid damage during transport. We try to ensure that the fruit reaches your table with the highest quality and in the best possible condition.
Pitaya crops from Huerta de Pancha
In Spain, and practically all over Europe, it is only possible to grow pitayas in Malaga thanks to our tropical climate. This crop is demanding and delicate, and is known for not producing a large amount of fruit.
The optimum temperature for the development of the plant is around 16-25ºC. As it is a tropical plant, it does not tolerate low temperatures, nor very high ones, as temperatures above 38ºC can cause burns.
Being such a demanding plant in terms of climate, in Axarquia we have conditions that are well adapted to the cultivation of this fruit. That is why our pitayas are unique.
our pitaya’s properties
The pitayas we grow at Huerta de Pancha have a high water content. Their calorie content is low, as is their carbohydrate content. Pitayas are sources of vitamins B and C and are good antioxidants.
In addition, the leaves, which are in the form of flakes, have many benefits when taken as an infusion. Among them, they relieve headaches, improve insomnia, anxiety and nervous disorders.
How to eat pitayas
Pitaya can be eaten raw by simply cutting the fruit into quarters or slices and removing the skin. Another even easier method is to cut it in two and scoop out the pulp directly with a spoon. It will be the perfect breakfast or snack to satisfy hunger at any time of the day.
Pitaya also has several uses in cooking. It is often used as an eye-catching garnish, as an ingredient in sweet dishes, salads, smoothies or shakes. Some people also use it to make jam or ice cream, in short, any dessert.
The trick to get the most out of its flavour is to accompany it with a squeeze of lemon juice.
How to preserves pitaya
Our pitayas must be kept in a cool, dry place, away from heat sources and without direct contact with sunlight. But cool does not mean that they have to be put in the fridge, it is enough to keep them in the vegetable drawer. We do not recommend putting them in the fridge because, being a tropical fruit, their texture and flavour may be altered. However, you can put them in the fridge for a little while before eating them if you like to eat them fresh or if you inevitably need to preserve them for a little longer.