curuba, banana passion fruit, musk cucumber, sikana, melocotonero/calabaza mélon (Mexico), melo-cotón (Guatemala), cura/melao caboclo/melao maca (Brazil), cojombro (Nicaragua)
(Sicana odorifera — Family Cucurbitaceae)
Cassabanana is a member of the Gourd family, and likely native to Brazil, but now found throughout tropical America.
It is sometimes grown as an ornamental vine; but it is also popular for its fruits in Cuba, Puerto Rico, and Mexico.
The fruit is elongated like a passion fruit or a wide-bodied cucumber, and generally about twelve to twenty-four inches long and up to five inches thick.
It has a hard, shiny shell which can be red, purple, or black. The juicy, orange pulp has a sharp flavour and needs a little sweetening to make it enjoyable. The texture and aroma are melon-like. The fruit is often used for that reason to repel moths.
The interior cavity contains massive rows of tightly packed, oval, flat seeds.
The skin of this very large fruit can be peeled in the same way as a banana, and blends well with other fruits in salads.
Although refreshing when eaten raw, the cassabanana is more popularly used for making jams. The unripened fruit is good for soups and stews.