Now don't get all hot and bothered -- passion fruit has nothing to do with aphrodisiacs. In fact, this decidedly sexy-sounding tropical fruit gets its name from the plant's spiky flower that recalls Christ's crown of thorns. Moving along, the deep-purple egg-shaped fruit also looks like a shrivelled-up kiwi and has a sweet golden pulp dotted with tiny black seeds. Not readily available at most grocers, passion fruit go for $1.79 each at Harvest Wagon (1103 Yonge, 416-923-7542).
This simple recipe for Passion Fruit Sauce, using two passion fruit to make a gingery topping that goes well with rice pudding, ice cream or frozen yogurt. Combine in a small saucepan: 1 cup each of orange juice and filtered water, 2 tablespoons honey, 1 tablespoon minced ginger and 2 ounces diced apricot. Simmer, stirring occasionally, over medium-low heat for 10 minutes or until the sauce thickens. Cut one of the passion fruit in half lengthwise, scoop out its pulp and seeds and add them to the pan. Simmer another 5 minutes. Remove from heat and chill. Once cool, blend or process to desired consistency, then fold in the remaining passion fruit pulp and seeds to add colour and texture. Makes 1 cup.