Aguaymanto

Ark of taste
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Topotopo

Aguaymanto (Physalis peruviana L.) is also known as golden berry, uvilla, coztomate, Peruvian ground cherry, pogapoga, wild tomato or tomatillo. In the Quechua language it is called topotopo. It is a silver, erect, perennial herb native to South America and belonging to the same botanical family as tomatoes, potatoes and eggplants. It averages from 0.5 to 1 meter in height, occasionally growing taller. Heart-shaped leaves are 6 – 15 cm long and 4 – 10 cm wide. Aguaymanto has yellow, bell-shaped flowers and yellowish-orange, round berries 1-5 – 2 cm in diameter. These fruits have a smooth, waxy skin, with a soft and juicy flesh and small, edible yellow seeds. The ripe fruit has a sweet and slightly bitter taste.   The aguaymanto is a fruit with a pleasant, slightly acidic flavor. It has been known as a food source for centuries, particularly among the Incas where it was a favored plant of the nobility. It is eaten alone, in syrup with desserts and with other sweet fruits. It can also be used to produce jams and preserves. Its internal structure is similar to a small tomato. It is also preserved dehydrated, which helps the fruits preserve most of their nutritional properties. It is a fruit that is known for its good content of vitamins A and C, phosphorus, iron, potassium and zinc.   In Argentina, aguaymanto grows in the northwestern part of the country, mainly in the provinces of Jujuy and Salta. It is harvested from the wild, but in Argentina, unlike in neighboring counties, it is not widely commercialized. In Argentina, it is virtually unknown to people living in urban areas. Due to changes in culture and migration to cities, younger generations are less attached to the local land and lack awareness of the wild products used by previous generations.

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Territory

StateArgentina
Region

Jujuy

Salta

Other info

Categories

Fruit, nuts and fruit preserves

Indigenous community:Kolla of Tumbaya Grande