Passion fruit is an intensely flavorful fruit that grows on vines in tropical regions. It is a sun-loving plant that requires plenty of water and nutrient-rich soil. Beautiful flowers produce fruit can be as small as a golf ball or as big as an orange. There are sweeter golden varieties as well as tart purple, and a bunch of hybrids. The fruit drops when ripe and the skin protects the juicy, seed-filled pulp within. The pulp has an intense flavor reminiscent of tart peaches or apricots, and a little goes a long way. Passion fruit syrup is most common in tiki cocktail recipes, but it’s great on everything!
To make a syrup from the fruit, you need to start with the pulp. Unless you have access to fresh fruit, you will need to find passion fruit puree. Not all products are created equal. You should avoid descriptions like “nectar” or anything with added sugar. Check the ingredients to ensure it’s not just a lot of apple and pear juice! We have made syrup from the boxed juice you can sometimes find in grocery stores, but it is nowhere near as good as using pure fruit pulp. We would buy a commercial passion fruit syrup before doing that again. However, we have had fantastic results using Funkin Pro which comes in a convenient, unrefrigerated vacuum sealed bag. The package has more than we can use quickly, so we freeze it in five ounce portions, ready to make a cup of syrup:
Passion Fruit Syrup
5 oz passion fruit puree
3 oz simple syrup
Take a 5 oz portion of passion fruit puree (such as Funkin Pro) and mix with 3 oz of simple syrup. Store in a clean bottle in the refrigerator for several weeks.
We use a 1:1 ratio of simple syrup when we make this, but there is some flexibility here. A higher ratio of sugar or a higher ratio of simple syrup to fruit puree will yield a sweeter result. We like it to have that intense tartness, so a 5:3 ratio has worked very well. You can always add more simple syrup to a cocktail as needed. This ratio in ounces also fills an 8 ounce container which stores easily in the refrigerator and usually lasts several weeks. Given that this is a cold process, the flavor and aroma is maintained, but care must be taken to keep everything very clean. Homemade passion fruit syrup will not last forever, but the intense flavor is worth the effort, and if you make it in small quantities you can always make more. Larger quantities can be frozen (or just freeze the extra fruit puree until needed).
We recently cleaned up the freezer a bit and combined all of our 5-ounce portions of puree, measured the result and mixed a big batch of passion fruit syrup at the 5:3 ratio. We now keep the finished syrup in the freezer in a deli container and scoop it outwith an ice cream scooper when we need to replenish a small container in the refrigerator.