Breadfruit is called ‘rimas’ in the Philippines. It is a fruit and vegetable at the same time. We eat the fruit by boiling or grilling and steaming. My grandma always serve us breakfast of boiled “rimas” and freshly grated coconut with sugar. It’s so tasty and good for your health too. It has a texture of a sweet potato but tastes a little bland that’s why we have to dip it in coconut with sugar. As a vegetable, we cook “rimas”, some people call it “kamansi”, in coconut milk with chili peppers and ginger for spicing it up.
I did not know back then, but Hawaiians call breadfruit “ulu” and it is a very important staple food for the Polynesian people. The fruit is full of starch just like ‘poi’ or mashed taro. The tree which belongs to the mulberry family has latex that the natives used as a caulk in their boat making. The leaves of the breadfruit is an inspiration for a design in the Hawaiian quilt making.
The tree produces both male and female flowers which can be pollinated in three days. A single tree can produce up to 200 fruits per season. For this reason, we should plant this tree as a means of survival during the bad weather or hurricane season as a food source just in case.