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Farmers Almanac
The 2014 Farmers Almanac
Farmers' Almanac

What the Heck Is Starfruit?

What the Heck Is Starfruit?

Starfruit, or carambola, is a five-lobed yellow fruit native to Indonesia, India, and Sri Lanka, though it is now cultivated in tropical regions of both North and South America, as well. When sliced into cross sections, starfruit resembles a five-pointed star, which is how it got its name.

Though not technically a member of the citrus family, starfruit’s sweetly-sour flavor is reminiscent of many citrus fruits. Starfruit features an edible waxy yellow skin and many contain small dark seeds in the center.

Starfruit is a rich source of antioxidants and vitamin C, and is low in sugar, sodium, and acid.

To choose a ripe starfruit, look for firm fruits that are bright yellow with only light tinges of green. Dark brown coloring along the five ridges is normal.

To eat, simply slice the starfruit to the desired thickness, creating a series of flat star shapes. Remove and discard the seeds you find. You may also wish to scrape off the tough brown ridges prior to slicing.

Here are some more ways to enjoy starfruit:

Starfruit Salad

One head of lettuce, shredded
2 tomatoes, sliced
1/2 red onion, sliced thin
1 avocado, sliced
2 starfruit, sliced

On four salad plates, arrange a bed of lettuce, and layer on the remaining ingredients. Drizzle with your favorite dressing.

Starfruit Bread

2 cups flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter, softened
3 eggs
2 cups starfruit, mashed
1 cup chopped coconut

Preheat oven to 350° F. In a small bowl, combine flour, baking powder and salt. In a large bowl, cream sugar and butter, then add and cream eggs and starfruit. Stir in flour mixture, blending thoroughly. Stir in coconut. Pour mixture into a greased bread pan. Bake for 50 minutes.

If you notice a hole in the upper left-hand corner of your Farmers' Almanac, don't return it to the store! That hole isn't a defect; it's a part of history. Starting with the first edition of the Farmers' Almanac in 1818, readers used to nail holes into the corners to hang it up in their homes, barns, and outhouses (to provide both reading material and toilet paper). In 1910, the Almanac's publishers began pre-drilling holes in the corners to make it even easier for readers to keep all of that invaluable information (and paper) handy.