Brazilian Chefs Use Jenipapo Berries to Turn Food Blue

Jenipapo. Image by Jaboticabafotos/Depositphotos

The latest trend in restaurants all over Brazil are meals colored blue thanks to the use of a native plant with a unique pigment. Jenipapo berries are widely used to turn common foods blue, so the Brazilians now enjoy blue salads, blue tortillas, and blue bread. 

Jenipapo berries have always been around in Brazil. The old tribes used them for body painting and they’ve been a cooking staple for many years. Thanks to the high concentration of a substance called genipin, Jenipapo can give an edible blue pigment that’s safe for many different uses, including cooking.

The Brazilians have been using this unique fruit to extract dye for a long time, but they just started coloring food with it in 2014, after professor and biologist Valdely Kinupp explained how to do it safely in his book Unconventional Food Plants in Brazil.

Today, if you go to Brazil, you can try many different blue meals virtually everywhere. In the meantime, you can see what people have posted on social media. Does this look delicious and tempting to you or do you prefer your food to come in natural colors?