Atis is just starting to reach the local markets. Atis (Annona squamosa) or Sugar Apple is part of the Annonaceae family that includes the more commonly known cherimoya in the west, guyabano or soursop and surprisingly, the ilang-ilang tree. It is actually not known where the atis is indigenous to but they grow in abundance throughout Central and South America. The Spaniards brought seeds to the Philippines in the early 17th century and the local name hails from the Aztec “ahate” according to Doreen Fernandezâ€™s book on Philippine fruit. The tree is relatively small and bears just a few dozen fruit when left to its own devices. But the fruit can be heaven, hundreds of seeds inside are coated with a soft sugary pulp or meat that tastes like a super sweet custard. The seeds can be a pain in the neck but if you enter an atis zen mode prior to breaking one open, you learn to work the seeds to get at the wonderful pulp.