Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Sweet dragon

A couple of months ago, Diane and Todd of White on Rice Couple posted about the beautiful dragonfruit flowering in their garden. I commented that I had never tasted dragonfruit. Lo and behold, a sample appeared in the mail! How sweet is that?

Dragonfruit is also called pitaya and is native to the Americas, and is also grown in Southeast Asia. It's a kind of cactus that is easily cultivated in tropical climes. (The photo at right is courtesy of Nhã Lê Hoàn via Wikipedia.)

The slightly translucent flesh of the dragonfruit is sweet and smooth, like a perfectly ripened honeydew melon. It's really pretty to look at up close, too. (Click on the photo below to see what I mean.)
The taste is a bit pear-like, very mild. The seeds are teeny-tiny and easily crunched. They don't detract from the eating at all. I'm reminded a bit of fig seeds. Supposedly they're also like the seeds of kiwi, which I can't eat. (If you're going to have a food allergy, it's good to have a bizarre one that's not hard to accommodate.)

I polished off half right away, and saved the other half for Mom to try. She was suspicious of the strange fruit sent by strangers (to her) but gamely opened up, and pronounced it good.
Thanks, Todd and Diane, for expanding our life lists of flavors!


  1. great photos and I LOVE this fruit I just dont like its 5 dollar a pound price tag though...great photos

  2. Never seen or tasted that - but really want to. I went to Brazil once and tried about 17 new fruits, but not that one! It looks like from another planet.

  3. What cool pictures, and what a great gift. I've never had dragon fruit. I'll have to look for it.

  4. Everything about this post makes me smile, especially hearing that the cute White on Rice couple sent you a sample just b/c you said you'd never tasted it. Yesterday I explored a new (to me) Asian grocery store and discovered quite a few exotic, and quite photogenic, fruits and vegetables. Of course, I didn't have my camera with me but your pictures inspire me to go back with camera in hand to take some shots. If I end up spending beaucoup bucks on a fancy new camera it will be your fault Kitt....

  5. I simply covet that fruit. What amazing packaging & content for Mother Nature to have designed for us salivating mortals!

    Now I will have to figure out how to locate one.

  6. At first I thought this was going to be one of your mystery photos. It could have been since I've never heard of dragonfruit. Now I want some. It looks sooooo good.

  7. Ohhhhh. That looks glorious! My family's from Southeast Asia and yet I've never tried dragonfruit... boo.

    By the way, I LOVE when I get to catch up on your blog.

  8. Wow, that is very cool. It looks like something out of a Dr. Seuss book.

  9. Thanks, db! $5 a pound??? I'll have to see if Asian or Latino groceries here stock it, and for how much.

    JGH, I'll bet Brazilian fruit is fabulous. It's amazing how many kinds are out there.

    Thanks, Julie. It's worth scouting out.

    Glad to make you smile, Pam! Let that be a lesson, too: Always carry your camera! (And this pocket-sized one costs $170, so you don't need to break the bank for nice pictures.)

    Titus, your local grocery might even have it occasionally, since they carry cherimoya.

    Betts, I thought about doing a What Is It? post, but I didn't want to put all the explanation on the click-through photo.

    Thanks, Duck and Leah!

    Val, guess you need to go get some now and remedy that. And thanks!

    Jen, the fruit looks smiley from that angle, doesn't it? Like a Saxton Freymann illustration.

  10. I've seen signs for dragonfruit at the Asian Market, but it didn't look anything like your photos. It's absolutely otherworldly, like something Mary Poppins would serve up.

    Thanks for introducing me to the White on Rice kids... I'm pretty sure I "met" them here in your blogroll. Can hardly wait for their cookbook to be published!


  11. Amy Fruitlady sent me over as a fellow Denverite... and WOW! What an amazing fruit!!!

  12. You're on Slashfood!! Woo-hoo!!! Congrats, Kitt! Your pictures are the best, I must say.

  13. Congrats KB on the "Shout Out" by Wow! You Grow Girl!

  14. Dani, I wonder what other "dragonfruit" is out there. I'll have to Google it.

    Hi Aimee! Thanks!

    Thanks, Lauren and Titus! Slashfood rocks.