The carambolo or carambola is a fruit as curious as to its name. It is oval, elongated, with five edges or fins. When cut, it has the shape of a five-pointed star. It is mainly consumed fresh, in salads, cocktails, and as a garnish, because of its star shape. In spite of not being a very well-known or demanded fruit, the carambola is highly valued in international markets because it provides enormous benefits to the organism, essential for health.
The Averrhoa carambola, star fruit, chiramelo, Chinese fruit, starambolo, carambola, or however you know it, is a fruit that occurs in the branches and trunk, in the shape of a five-pointed star, its pulp is juicy, a little fibrous, and acid, can be eaten both raw and cooked.
At the time of purchase, the skin must be clean and smooth, it can be found in the market all year round. To know if it is already ripe, the fruit should have a yellow to orange color, and the edges a little darkened. Store in a cool place, out of direct sunlight, if purchased green should be left at a temperature of 20°C (68°F), once ripe, it is best to store it in the refrigerator which will ensure that it is kept in optimal conditions for two to three weeks, try to cut it until it is consumed.
The juice of the carambola is used to remove stains, including rust. It is used in the wine industry and in the vinegar industry. The flowers can be consumed in salads. It benefits acne-prone or oily skin.
The carambola is small, its length ranges between seven and 12 centimeters. It has a thin, lustrous skin that is also edible, green in color; golden, and orange when ripe. The flesh is crisp, smooth textured, and yellow in color, with a fine sweet and sour flavor. It has few or no seeds. The large fruits of the carambola are tastier and sweeter than the small ones, with a more sweet and sour taste. This plant requires a high temperature all year round and high humidity. It is not demanding in soils; it grows well in shallow sandy soils and in clay soils. It does not tolerate waterlogging so it requires very well-drained soils.
The carambola can be reproduced by seed or by grafting and cutting. The seeds take a long time to germinate, even up to fifty days after sowing. In addition, if propagated by seed, the trees obtained vary greatly from one another. The first harvest occurs at three years of age. Jackfruit are harvested by hand when they begin to change color from green to yellow. They should not be left to ripen on the tree because there is a risk of being bitten by birds and losing their commercial value. The harvested fruits can withstand five to seven days when stored in airy places.