The ice apple is popular in India, where it may have originated, and it’s grown in Vietnam, Cambodia, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Malaysia, Thailand, Singapore, regions of tropical Africa, as well as in Hawaii and Florida. The fruit has different names across different areas of India, like in Tamil Nadu, where it’s known as nungu. It’s also known as palm fruit. The ice apple is very dark purple in color when ripe. The size of the fruit makes it slightly resemble an eggplant, although its texture is similar to that of a coconut. Prime season for these fruits is between May and August, which is also when they’re most readily available from street vendors.
An ice apple’s taste is said to be sweet, but it sometimes has a bitter aftertaste. The fruit contains casings full of mildly sweet liquid. It’s also rich in B vitamins, calcium, and iron. It’s sometimes used to treat digestive problems.