ingredient information
The fruits of a number of species of Byrsonima have been consumed by the Indians of Central America and northern South America. The best-known of these is the nance, B. crassifolia The nance is a slow-growing large shrub or tree to 33 ft (10 m) high, or, in certain situations, even reaching 66 ft (20 m); varying in form from round-topped and spreading to narrow and compact; the trunk short or tall, crooked or straight. Young branches are densely coated with russet hairs. The fruits are eaten raw or cooked as dessert, or may be included in soup or in stuffing for meats. J.N. Rose in 1899 wrote that he saw nances, olives and rice cooked with stewed chicken in Mexico. The fruits are often used to prepare carbonated beverages, or an acid, oily, fermented beverage known by the standard term chicha applied to assorted beer-like drinks made of fruits or maize. By distillation, there is produced in Costa Rica, a rum-like liquor called Crema de nance. In Magdalena, Colombia, an edible fat is extracted from the fruits with boiling water.