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Durian in New England?

I've seen so much about these little buggers. Anyone have any idea where I could find one? I'm in Providence, but willing to travel. Thanks in advance!

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  1. There is a Chinese/Thai market here in Portland that carries them "when they have them at Qunicy Market." So, either come to Portland and check out the market on St. John St or see if they have them at the market near Fanneuil(sp?) Hall in Boston...

    1 Reply
    1. re: Bunnyfood

      No kidding. Where on St. John St? Although I could probably find the place if I drive around with the windows down...

    2. they sell them frozen at south east asian markets here in providence.. if this is your first time trying durian, let me say that the frozen variety is no where close to how the fresh ones taste. i wouldnt even bother. i'm not sure if fresh durians are allowed in the US due to agricultural laws, etc.. I have yet to encounter fresh durian here.. but if you ever go to South East Asia, definitely try them despite their notorious stink. durian has a creamy, custardly sweet taste that is as unique as their smell. durian ice cream is pretty good too.. if you're very curious, you can try durian wafers.. i think the brand is "garden" .. they have the durian smell but also the creamy durian taste.

      3 Replies
      1. re: sprinklez

        There are definetly fresh durian in providence - I bought one last spring from the market near Pho Paradise last spring to make into ice cream. Perhaps they are seasonal.

        1. re: sprinklez

          I've had the frozen ones, along with durian ice cream, smoothies, and candy. How are the fresh ones different? Are they more pungent? I know the more highly prized ones in SE Asia are the smelliest. I didn't find the frozen one to be that bad at all.

          1. re: Dinsdale45

            When you make ice cream with it the smell goes way down. The fresh has a sweet onion flavor with a custard texture.

        2. I just saw them here in Providence last week. Really! The fresh ones. They were at Sunny Market, which is on Resevoir Ave, on the Providence side. Near the 4 Seasons Restaurant and I believe a Job Lot. They were smaller than ones I saw in Asia, but definitely durians!

          1 Reply
          1. re: bastaya

            Sweet! I live in the Armory, so that's about a 5 minute drive. I'll have to go check this weekend.

            Thanks everyone!

          2. The Super 88 Asian supermarket in Allston (Boston) has them fresh but I can't attest to the quality or the price. Having tried durian many, many times in Asia I have to say that I am not a big fan and my Asian friends tell me that there are many different types and the taste varies widely. Super 88 nhas just about anything and everything you could want for Asian cooking.

            1. they ain't little, in size taste or smell.
              but as others have posted; they're available at almost all C-Marts, Super 88s and decent size Asian markets near Boston.

              3 Replies
              1. re: ScubaSteve

                Be advised, they are pungent. We almost had to evacuate our office the other day because of complaints of a supposed gas leak--it turned out that three of our employees had brought in durian milkshakes and were enjoying them at their desks!

                  1. re: whs

                    that actually happened to one of my friends in college! he brought durian to his dorm and the whole building evacuated because they thought it was a gas leak. they later found out it was just stinky fruit.

                    anyway, i didnt know providence had durian. sorry for my previous ill-advice. i will look out for them as well. happy eatings!

                1. Thanks, everyone. I found a few fresh durians at Sunny Market in Cranston today. Can't wait to crack this bad boy open...

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: invinotheresverde

                    i was just at sunny market this weekend. i dont think those durians are fresh.. they're previously frozen. you can tell because they come in those plastic beehive pattern bag thingies (dont know the proper term for them).. anyway, how did they taste? im kinda wary because i had a bad experience with the previously frozen ones.

                    1. re: sprinklez

                      I think it may have been previously frozen also, as it wasn't as strong of a smell as I had anticipated. Bummer.

                  2. I feel like I'm missing out somehow, but I just can't get past the smell. I thought that about 90 percent of taste was smell and wonder why you all don't taste a dirty diaper when durian is served.

                    Do you guys hold your nose or something?

                    Is durian an acquired taste that I may not have the stamina for?

                    Did you like durian at first taste?

                    Did you have to work at your "relationship" with the stinky fruit?

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: jandazza

                      The first time I smelled durian was a trip to visit family in Malaysia when I was twelve. I ran three stories away in order to escape the stench.

                      Fast forward eight years and I find myself back in SE asia, with a new palate. I started by eating durian ice cream, durian candy, etc. They are not as strong in flavor or in smell. Eventually I grew to enjoy the fruit itself

                      1. re: jimmiah

                        Certain stinky cheeses have the same effect. We were in Pont l'Eveque a few years back and bought some of the local cheeses. When we opened the trunk of the car at that night's hotel, it smelled like a garbage truck. People actually stopped in their tracks, trying to figure out where the smell was coming from.

                        1. re: whs

                          Okay, that is an *awesome* story WHS. I love it.

                    2. I lived in Singapore for a year and you could always tell when you walked into one of the mega malls (where the grocery store was) and there was a fresh batch of durian on hand. The smell would permeate the entire place (not great.)

                      Once a year there would be a durian festival at another mall where you could pay the equivalent of $5 for all you could eat. I couldn't go near the place!

                      It is forbidden to take it on public transportation there and you would have to pay extra for a taxi to take you home with one.

                      Unfortunately, like others that have posted, I never could get past the smell and acquire a taste for it as much as I tried.