It's not hard to reason this one but you migh...
Some people liken the odor of this Southeast Asian fruit to 'month-old unwashed socks' or 'a city dump on a hot summer day!' Others oscillate to the other extreme and crown it the most delicious fruit with an aroma to die for. So it seems this fruit usually evokes one of two emotions--deep appreciation or extreme disgust!
One way or the other, one thing is for certain: the durian is definitely the most revered and well-known fruit from this region--despite its intimidating exterior! Are you an adventurous eater? Well then this article should definitely tickle your taste buds!
The Durian is a light green, spiky, melon-like fruit with an 'unforgettable odor.' The mystique of this stinky delight has intrigued travelers for years and has in turn earned it worldwide fame. This fruit can grow on several tree species belonging to the genus 'Durios,' and it can grow as large as 30 centimeters long and 15 centimeters wide!
Typically, it weighs about 1 to 3 kgs, and its shape varies from oblong to round. While the colour of its tough husk is usually greenish-brown, the delicate creamy flesh that fills up its insides changes from yellow to red, depending on the species. Out of about 30 recognized durio species, only 9 produce edible fruit. It's mostly native to Brunei, Indonesia and Malayasia, but many other regions, like Southeastern India, Ceylon and New Guinea, can cultivate it easily.
The flesh of this fruit can be consumed at several stages of ripeness and its flavor can thus vary from savory to sweet! Many old wives tales are associated with the fruit and some Thais believe that eating this fruit immediately before or after alcohol consumption can cause serious side-effects, including death! There is some truth to this though, because the simultaneous consumption of this fruit with any carbonated drinks has been known to cause seriously unpleasant side-effects!
All in all, it seems there is no middle ground with this fruit. Southeast Asian countries have banned its public transportation because of its odor. This despite the fact that they consider it the 'King of Fruits!' The best example of this is Singapore's love-hate relationship with the fruit. On the city-state's Mass Rapid Transit Line, the law prohibits its passengers from carrying durians, but the design of a famous high-tech building called Esplanade 4 was apparently inspired by this fruit!
All we can say is, don't dismiss it till you've tried it!
-Pictures courtesy Thinkstock-
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