tropical fruit salad

dragonfruit. lychees. mango. yum.

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I don’t know how well this really fits into Weekend Herb Blogging, but it seems to adhere to the rules, and it’s something many people may be unfamiliar with… and I just found out it’s actually a cactus plant, which renders it kinda herby, don’t you think?

this is also not much of a recipe/dish, but it IS lush. and hey, I’m new at this.

DRAGON FRUIT aka Pitaya

so, it’s a cactus, we’ve covered that. they’re easily available at the markets here in the tropics, and pretty cheap – 3 for $5, although mangos are currently 6 (giants) for $5, or free from colleagues/friends with a tree, so mangos win. the ones I bought are red, but there are other varieties, and the flesh can also be white, grey-ish or yellow-ish, with the little back seeds. in searching around for info links, I read over and over that it is “kinda like kiwifruit” and even that it was related to kiwifruit. since I myself AM a kiwi, and am therefore reasonably familiar with kiwifruit vines, I am quite convinced that kiwifruit is NOT a cactus. but you never know.

tastewise, I also don’t think its too close to kiwifruit, probably it’s the texture and the lovely little seeds that remind everyone of that other crazy-looking and close-to-my-heart fruit.

enough about what dragonfruit isn’t and on to what dragonfruit is: perfumed, a little earthy, not hugely sweet. it’s a lovely delicate flavour, which reminds me very slightly of fresh beetroot, and when you first cut it open it smells just a little like garden picked sun-ripened tomatoes.

anyway, the flavour is nice, but not amazing in my books, which is why I’ve tossed it with lush-lush-lush mango and lychees, with some lime zest and juice.

where the dragonfruit comes into it’s own, however, is visual appeal. it is BEAUTIFUL. I’m obviously a fan, that’s dragonfruit in my header. the unskinned fruit is fantastic to look at in the fruit bowl, with the pink and green fleshy skin with spikes. the black-speckled deep pink cubes look exquisite in the fruit salad, and the red-pink juice goes everywhere and stains everything (making a gorgeous pink syrup in the fruit salad, but also pink tinted fingers and a big pink splotch on my shirt: beware!).

so, I think dragonfruit can be best used for it’s pinkness – and I’m thinking of moving on to pink smoothies and sorbets, jellies, etc etc. I just love pink!

I took this fruit salad to work (it was waaaay too big for just me. the mango alone was the size of a baby’s head) and everyone said “oh! what’s the red stuff? oh, yum!”

oh, and I love the pile of exquisite remains on the chopping board afterwards.
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6 thoughts on “tropical fruit salad

  1. Welcome to your fist weekend Herb Blogging! Funnily enough I’v been eating these for a month in Cambodia except the flesh was white. I haven’t seen a red one before. i don’t think there are any food blogers further north than you in Queensland are there?

  2. thanks for the visits everyone, and thanks Ed for hosting! Kalyn, I’m already thinking about other WHB posts, Gattina, the aestheitcs is my absolute favourite thing about dragonfruit.. and I agree with paz, awesome name (much more interesting than pitaya)

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