- A Jamaican fruit with spongy white or yellow flesh. Available fresh or canned. Also called akee.
A handful of islands grow ackee as an ornamental tree, but only Jamaica looks at it as a tree that bears edible fruit. The ackee fruit is bright red. When ripe it bursts open to reveal three large black seeds and bright yellow flesh that is popular as a breakfast food throughout Jamaica. Ackee's scientific name, blighia sapida, comes from Captain Bligh, who introduced the plant to Jamaica from West Africa. Ackee is poisonous if eaten before it is fully mature and because of its toxicity, it is subject to import restrictions and may be hard to obtain in some countries. Never open an ackee pod; it will open itself when it ceases to be deadly. Ackee is sold canned in West Indian markets.