Thursday, October 25, 2007


This was the way my brother Taba loved to eat his atis; painstakingly removing each skin of the fruit's segment until he could just take a big bite. I, on the other hand, would just cut it in half with a knife, and then with a teaspoon just scoop out its sweet white segments.

This was the fruit we would excitedly anticipate every summer. But since our childhood days, atis has been made into ice cream and juice.

It was introduced in the Philippines by the Spanish during the colonial era. The atis tree will grow easily in any tropical setting. After about a year's time, it will begin to bear fruit three times a year; the sweetest are those borne during the summer months.

As for its curative properties, the seed contains a yellow, non-drying oil which is an irritant that can be used against lice. The unripe fruit is astringent and can be used for diarrhea, dysentery and dyspepsia, while the roots can be used as a potent laxative. The bark of its tree is astringent and tonic; whereas, crushing and smelling its fresh leaves help those who suffer from fainting spells.

Atis is now fairly abundant in the city markets; selling price is about 80 pesos per kilo.


posted by Señor Enrique at 7:32 AM


Blogger ScroochChronicles said...

I once got into a shouting match with a tindera in Bangkok because of her atis. It was my first time to see such huge Bangkok atis and I couldn't help but make "pisil". Bawal pala dun!! Naku she started cursing me in Thai!! Eh di I cursed her back in Pinoy!! Yabang niya eh..di ko naman alam na bawal. Syempre, I bought the atis afterwards and gave it to my Mom :)

October 25, 2007 8:20 AM  

Blogger Photo Cache said...

one of the "eats" i sorely missed since leaving the country. i dont recall seeing atis here at all. i did find a frozen caimito from vietnam. it was too frozen that when thawed it had very little of the caimito taste.

October 25, 2007 8:36 AM  

Blogger FilMasons NSW said...

I love atis... especially our small but sweeter variety. I guess, like you Senor I have a sweet tooth.

That is how I love to eat atis,like your brother Taba. Even licking and savouring each of the "petal" skin. Then taking that one big bite and spitting those seeds out like eating watermelons. Nowadays you can have custard apples here in Sydney as well and love those seedless watermelons.

Here's a link that you might want to read... re photography:

Have a great day and thanks for wishing us there and making us salivate on the fruits in season. Missing "home".


October 25, 2007 9:00 AM  

Blogger nutart said...

funny thing about atis...I would buy them in the palengke then carefully inspect the good seeds that might grow. Then I would carefully plant them in my clay pots and really water them regularly...but no show. My nearby neighbor has lots of the atis trees and I would ask how she had them grown. She said they love eating it and just spit the seeds out. I have done the same but still we are not blessed by any sign of atis growth.

October 25, 2007 9:10 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I love sugar apples too! My grandma used to grow them in her garden. Like you, we would anticipate for the fruit to ripe.


October 25, 2007 9:36 AM  

Blogger carlotta1924 said...

that's why i'm glad we have an atis tree in our garden, we don't have to buy from the grocery anymore. ang kalaban lang namin birds at fruit bats hehehe. =)

October 25, 2007 10:54 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said...

kinukutsara mo ang atis? hehehehe kyut naman, ako kinakagat ko tapos bahala na dila kong kumapa ng buto sabay luwa :)

October 25, 2007 12:45 PM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Tamad kasi ako magbalat at wala akong pasensiya tulad ng kapatid ko kaya hatiin na lang at kutsarahin -- bilis pa, di ba Melai? :)

October 25, 2007 2:25 PM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

So lucky you are, Carla. All you have to do is pick one from its tree in your backyard. I've never seen an atis tree.

October 25, 2007 2:26 PM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

In some parts of the world, they are called sugar apple. And how lucky you are as well, Kyels, to just pick the fruits right off your grandma's trees :)

October 25, 2007 2:28 PM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Oh no! Perhaps, what you ought to do, Nutart, is invite over your neighbors and serve them some atis and then have them spit out the seeds in the part of your garden where you'd like the trees to grow :)

October 25, 2007 2:31 PM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

I sort of get a kick out of making fellow Pinoy bloggers living abroad salivate once in a while with our native fruits, Mario ... hehehe.

Thanks for the link -- Strobist with Joey Lawrence -- awesome photographs and he's only 17. Is that encouraging or what ... hehehe. I did enjoy reading it, though, and even bookmarked the kid's site.

Thanks, Mario!

October 25, 2007 2:41 PM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Frozen caimito, Photo Cache? Much of its flavor must have disappeared, huh?

Caimito is one fruit I'm not that too fond of. I guess we have line of caimito trees at my aunt's house in Subic that I just overdosed on it ... hehehe.

October 25, 2007 2:45 PM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Shouting match in some foreign city, Scrooch? Hehehe!

How come Bangkok has many giant fruits. I don't believe there ever was a nuclear installation anywhere in Thailand that might precipitate such hugeness on local produce ... hahaha.

I often see vendors here in Manila hawking giant bayabas from Bangkok. But know what? they should grow giant "aratilis." Yeah!

October 25, 2007 2:49 PM  

Blogger armovil said...

Senor Enrique,

Masarap din ang atis na galing sa place namin sa Romblon, Romblon. Ako rin mas magandang kutsarahin ang atis kung ito ay kainin.

October 25, 2007 8:35 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I also like atis, but I salivate for guyabano. Once I dig in to its flesh, I just can't stop! Yum! Naglalaway ako, just with the thought of it. hehehe.

October 25, 2007 8:56 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Of all fruit-bearing trees in our neighborhood, the atis was quite rare. I know of only one tree growing fruits infrequently.

October 25, 2007 10:05 PM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

As I had said, Dave, I am yet to see an atis tree. It must be delightful to see one, especially with fruits in them :)

October 26, 2007 5:55 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Now, that's one fruit I haven't had in ages, Rhoda -- guyabano. From what I remember, it has a rather salty taste to is, too, no?

October 26, 2007 5:56 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Buti pala meron din iba pang kinukutsara ang atis ... hehehe ... di ba mas madali, Armovil?

But I bet Romblon boasts other great fruits besides atis.

October 26, 2007 5:58 AM  

Blogger NOYPETES said...

I won a high school beauty's heart with baskets of atis I brough her during my Saturday "dalaw" time against guys who showered her with expensive stateside chocolates.

October 26, 2007 6:06 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Wow! That's pretty awesome, Pete!

You just gave me a wonderful gift idea - a basketful of atis.

Those stateside chocolates are readily available in most local grocery stores nowadays that they've lost their "specialness." I'd rather have Choco-Nut bars at any time :)


October 26, 2007 7:13 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Guyabano - not salty but soury taste, Eric. Pero manamis namis din. Basta, yum talaga.

As for atis tree - parang guava tree lang siya. You can pick the fruits yourself, no need for aid of 'sungkit' or whatever.

October 26, 2007 9:21 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Aha! The sweet and sour taste of yummy guyabano!

Yes, I read that the atis trees aren't that tall :)

Thanks, Rhoda!

October 26, 2007 9:33 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said...

at nakakatamad ding kumuha ng kutsara lol! tissue na lang pwede na lalagyan ng buto hehehehe!

October 26, 2007 12:19 PM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Bakit kaya, Melai, ang buto ng atis ang hindi ginawa ng Dios na pwedeng patuyuin at asinan, ano? Eh, ang buto ng pakwan naman ay pagkaliit-liit at ang balat kung minsan sumusuot pa sa gitna ng mga ngipin :(

October 27, 2007 7:14 AM  

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Life in Manila as observed by a former New Yorker who with a laptop and camera has reinvented himself as a storyteller. Winner of the PHILIPPINE BLOG AWARDS: Best Photo Blog in 2007 and three Best Single Post awards in 2008.


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