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Goumi fruits are available in the summer months.
Goumi or Gumi are the fruit of the deciduous to semi-evergreen shrub botanically known as Elaeagnus multiflora of the Elaeagnaceae family. The Goumi plant is grown in some places for its edible fruit though predominantly it is grown as an ornamental shrub. The fruits have not experienced commercial success as they are too delicate to transport fresh without damaging them. The Goumi shrub is, however, starting to become a popular companion plant as a result of its nitrogen fixing ability which allows it to feed itself and surrounding plants with the nitrogen it produces.
Goumi fruits have an oblong drupe shape and measure up to half an inch in length. Their bright red skin is capped with a long thin stem, similar to a cherry. In addition to its vibrant berries, Goumi plants are known for their leaves which are green on one side with a silver-hued underside that is dotted with tiny scales. Goumi shrubs boast small, silver-white hued blossoms that boast an aromatic scent which has been compared to lilacs. The inner flesh of the Goumi fruit is juicy and surrounds a central, fibrous seed which though technically edible is not normally consumed. The fruits flavor is sweet-tart and unless fully ripe can be fairly astringent.
Goumi fruits offer vitamins C, A, and E, antioxidants, essential fatty acids, and flavonoids.
Goumi fruit has a sweet-tart flavor that can be enjoyed raw should your palate prefer a tart flavor profile. Goumi fruit can also be paired with sweet accompaniments in order to balance out their slightly sour taste. Cook down to make sauces, preserves, and pie fillings. Goumi can also be dried or mashed and dehydrated to make fruit leather. Muddle and strain off the juice for use in cocktails. For best flavor delicate Goumi fruits are best used within a few days of picking.
Goumi fruits are utilized as a medicinal plant in Japan, Korea, and China. While still relatively new to Europe and North America in some parts of the eastern United States the Goumi shrub is now listed as an established exotic species.
The Goumi shrub is native to Japan, China, and Korea. Still grown there today it is known to thrive in the open woodland and thickets of the mountains and lowland regions. The plants can also be found growing in parts of the United States where it is planted mainly as an ornamental shrub and as a companion plant in orchards to help increase the fruit production of other trees. Goumi plants prefer full sun exposure or partial shade and will thrive in most soil types provided they are well drained. Overly wet soil should be avoided and once established the Goumi shrub will be drought tolerant.
Recipes that include Goumi Fruit. One is easiest, three is harder.
|Hip Chick Digs||Goumi Berry Syrup|