I thought that I was quite knowledgeable about fruit until I arrived in South East Asia and in particular, Bali.
A visit to the local market as well as my daily breakfast plate was a wake up call to what other fruits exist in the world, other than what I grew up eating in Canada. As a child, apples, pears, bananas and oranges were the norm while here in Bali, kids enjoy picking dragon fruit, snake fruit, Markisa and silik fruit off of trees in their neighborhoods. It almost sounds like the making of a fairy tale..
The silik fruit is local and resembles a green acorn. When I cut it open, the fruit seemed to be exposing a mouth full of white teeth, roots and all. In fact, these individual teeth each have their own seeds that are wrapped in a sweet, soft flesh. If that is not appealing, you can also enjoy this fruit in the form of a cocktail syrup.
The markisa is Bali’s local passion fruit. When cut open, the seeds hang in a glutenous mass that does not seem appealing in the least. With a scoop of the spoon, the seeds jiggle into ones mouth and slowly slide down ones throat. I initially thought I would gag but in fact, once I got over the texture shock, I really liked the sweet, peach like flavour of the fruit.
The dragon fruit has a stunning fuchsia pink exterior with redeeming medicinal features. It is believed to reduce the risk of cancer and other internal diseases. Not only is it healthy to eat but it is also an attractive addition to a fruit plate with it’s bright coloured outer shell and it’s speckled black and white soft interior.
The snake fruit sounds and looks a bit daunting but it is very similar to a crunchy apple. The brown snake-like skin texture is surprisingly soft and easy to peel. The interior is divided into two halves, a bit like a white heart that have been sitting in formaldehyde. Hungry yet? The pieces are hard and crunchy, less juicy then an apple with two large pits. I am not sure that I would make any major efforts to search out this fruit.
If ever you find yourself traveling to destinations that offer a selection of fruits and vegetables that you are not familiar with, be adventuresome and try them. You might be pleasantly surprised. Bon Appétit.