What kind of snack do you reach for when the weather’s warm and your energy’s getting low? You may want to consider reaching for jícama.

(Jícama seen as white spears below)

Jícama is a root vegetable native to Mexico and Central America, and is also commonly found on fruit carts throughout Los Angeles. Jícama is served raw and has a taste that mildly resembles radish with a texture that is crisp like an apple. Jícama contains 49 calories per 1 cup sliced and is suitable for those following vegan, paleo, gluten free and keto diets.

(Jícama in its natural form seen centered in photo above)

Jícama’s increasing popularity has made it more accessible to purchase in regular grocery stores in both packaged and unpackaged forms. When purchased in its natural form it must be washed and peeled prior to eating. Once washed and cut, it can be stored for up to one week in an airtight container.

Recipe: Familiar Frutas

(Jícama seen above cut into spears and cubes)

This recipe is an homage to all the fruit carts throughout Los Angeles.

Ingredients:

Please modify to accommodate any allergies or intolerances.

  • 1 jícama
  • 1 pineapple
  • 2 mangos
  • 1 baby watermelon
  • 1 cucumber
  • 6 limes
  • Optional: chili powder

Preparation:

  1. Begin by skinning the jícama, mangos and cucumber. The pineapple and watermelon will not need to be skinned as they can be cut from the rind.
  2. Once all the produce is skinned consider the type of storage container that will be used to determine the size and shape of the fruit cuts. Then begin cutting into desired style.
  3. Once all the ingredients are prepped begin placing the cut fruit into leak proof containers. Have fun experimenting with different fruit combinations in this step.
  4. For each container squeeze the juice from 1 to 2 limes to taste and garnish with chili powder if desired.
  5. Enjoy!