|Origin||Breadfruit is a traditional starch-rich crop belonging to the Moraceae family. The tree, native to the Malay Peninsula and western Pacific Islands, is extensively cultivated in tropical and subtropical region.|
|Description||Breadfruit varieties vary in fruit form and colour, skin texture, leaf shape and dissection, and other physical attributes. The tree is fast-growing and reaches a height of 85 feet (26 m). Mature breadfruit trees are generally tall, especially if grown in deep, rich soils.|
|Growth Habitat||Growth of this tree depends on the variety chosen seeded or seedless. Breadfruit, an equatorial lowland species, grows best below elevations of 650 metres (2,130 ft) but is found at elevation of 1,550 metres (5,090 ft). Its preferred rainfall is 1,500-3,000 millimetres per year.|
|Foliage||The fruit has unusual shaped leaves, they are more or less deeply cut into 5 to 10 pointed lobes on thick yellow colored petioles. The leaves are glossy on top and has stiff hair on the underside.|
|Flowers||The tree bears a multitude of tiny flowers, male and female flowers developing on the same tree at the end of branches. The male flowers emerge first, followed shortly afterward by the female flowers, which grow into capitula, which are capable of pollination just three days later. The flowers fuse together and develop into the fleshy, edible portion of the fruit.|
|Fruits||The fruit are usually oblong, cylindrical, rounded or pear shaped. The skin is light to dark green, yellow green or yellow when mature, although one unusual variety has pinkish or orange brown fruit. The thin skin is patterned with pentagonal or hexagonal markings and can be smooth, bumpy or spiny.|
|Harvest||Breadfruit should be harvested upon maturity which is indicated by the appearance of small drops of latex on the surface. It can produce a yield of 50 to 100 fruits a year.|
|Soil||The Breadfruit is adapted to a wide range of soil, it mostly depends on which tropical place it is being planted. It has grown successfully in deep, fertile, well-drained soil, sandy coral soil, in freshwater swamps and even in salt-tolerant soils too. There are over 300 cultivars available and each is adapted to a different kind of soil composition.|
|Pruning||Pruning is not important, but as it is a densely foliated tree, cross pruning its branches will facilitate better air and light movement.|
|Fertilization||Water as per climatic the need, and feed it with a standard mixture of nitrogen phosphorus and potassium, seasonally. The feed can be increased when the tree reaches its bearing age. With good care, it will bear fruit from the age of 3 to 5 and be productive for a good 40 to 50 years.|
|Propagation||In general, breadfruit is vegetatively propagated using root shoots or root cuttings. Other methods include air layering, grafting and seed propagation. Breadfruit grown from seed will fruit in 5 to 10 years. Vegetatively propagated plants can produce fruit in 3 to 5 years, making this the preferred practice.|
|Breadfruit is roughly 25% of carbohydrates and 70% water. It has an average amount of Vitamin C, small amounts of minerals (potassium and zinc) and thiamin. The fruit also contains protein, fiber, lipids, calcium, copper, iron, manganese, magnesium, phosphorus, selenium, sodium, niacin, riboflavin, Vitamin E, Vitamin K, Vitamin B6. Breadfruit is very rich in healthy omega fats which increases the body’s power by the fatty acids namely : Omega 3, Omega 6. These vital fatty acids help the normal development of body and mind. It also increases skin colour, hair growth, regulation of metabolism, promotion of reproduction and also stimulates bone health.|
|Health Benefits||Provides high energy to those who eat it through its carbohydrate, mainly needed by the body for warmth and maintenance during daily activities.
The fiber in it helps to make the intestines and bowels work properly by cleansing out the junk from the intestines.
The dried fruit has been made into flour which is much richer than wheat flour and other essential amino acids.
Breadfruit is considered as cholesterol controller because it is a rich source of fiber that actually lowers the LDL levels (the “bad” cholesterol) while raising the levels of the HDL (the “good” cholesterol) which protects the arteries.
Breadfruit protects the body from heart diseases and heart attacks.
The fiber present in it helps those with diabetes to control the disease to some extent by the absorption of glucose from the food taken.
Consuming breadfruit on a regular basis can reduce the risk of developing colon cancer.
Breadfruit leaf is believed to lower blood pressure and also to reduce asthma.
|Commercial Uses||Breadfruit was widely and diversely used among Pacific Islanders. Its light-weight wood is resistant to termites and shipworms, so it is used as timber for structures and outrigger canoes. Its wood pulp can also be used to make paper, called breadfruit tapa. All parts of the tree yield latex, a milky juice, which is useful for boat caulking|
|Food Suggestion||Breadfruit Cheese Soup
- 1 full onion
- Garlic if needed
- Butter as required
- Peeled and sliced breadfruit
- Stalk celery chopped
- 2 cups of vegetable stalk
- 1 cup of milk
- Cheese as required
1)Heat up a pan, fry onion and garlic in butter for 2 mins.
2)Add vegetable stock, breadfruit and celery to the mixture.
3)Boil it by covering it and simmer for 20 mins.
4)Remove it from heat.
5)Puree mixture in blender in small batches, return the pureed mixture to medium heat. Add milk, half the cheese and reheat (do not boil).
Garnish with the remaining cheese and serve hot.