The macopa fruit is a tropical delight that is relatively rare, even in its native regions. Known as Macopa, Makopa, Tambis or Sambo, (depending on which region you live) in the Philippines and as Wax Apple in English, this fruit has a unique taste that only vaguely resembles an apple. The trees it grows can reach impressive heights, bearing lightly sweet and aromatic tambis or sambo fruits that transform from green to a reddish-pink hue as they ripen.

The macopa fruit, Syzygium malaccense, hails from Southeast Asia, particularly Malaysia, Indonesia, and the Philippines. It is bell-shaped or pear-shaped, with waxy skin that ranges in color. The white, spongy flesh is rich in vitamins and minerals, including vitamin C and dietary fiber.

I fondly remember my childhood friends and me climbing my grandpa’s towering Sambo tree, like little monkeys scampering from branch to branch in pursuit of the most enticing fruit. We would feast on one macopa after another, all while perched together on the very same branch of this majestic tree.