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Aug 6, 2009 10:27 AM

weird and wonderful fruit?

I just listened to a great interview with Adam Leith Gollner, author of The Fruit Hunters, A Story of Nature, Adventure, Commerce and Obsession, on the Splendid Table podcast



and I'm now DYING to find some tasty, special fruit that i have likley never tasted. Unfortunately, most of the fruit he talks about cannot be purchased in the States... but I figure with all the ethnic markets in the city I should be able to round up some good things.
Any reccommendations?
Oh, I'm not a big fan of super..uh... smelly things by the way :)


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    1. without listening to the podcast, can you list some of these fruits?

      1. Mangosteens, rambutans, lychees, longyan, dragon fruit, guavas all curently available in NYC Chinatowns, of course. That is by the way one of my absolute favorite books of the year, of any sort.

        5 Replies
        1. re: buttertart

          the street carts on mulberry on the south side of canal offer these, although there seems to be an explosion of fruit vendors all selling the same stuff up and down canal street. or, hit grand st.

          1. re: buttertart

            Hey! Thanks for the tip.... i picked up a slightly exotic (to me) cactus pear at Fairway today... I didn't really care for it... so seedy and really painful to handle! Maybe it's not best for cutting open and eating as is?

            1. re: strawberrysomething

              I've never eaten a cactus fruit so can't comment. Hie yourself to Chinatown and get some of the Asian fruits.

              1. re: strawberrysomething

                They are very refreshing and juicy on a boiling hot day in the desert (think Israel or Mexico.) I have actually picked them off of a cactus and gobbled then down on the spot.You eat the seeds and have to learn how not to get all of those nasty prickers on your fingers.Native-born Israelis are described as Sabras because their personality is often thought to be similar to the fruit of the plant: tough and prickly on the outside, sweet on the inside.

                1. re: missclaudy

                  Another one for the list. Thanks! (And they are such a glorious color inside.)

            2. if anyone else can chime in, I remember reading on these boards about from fruit importer in brooklyn (maybe a russian neighborhood?) that had all manner of exotic stuff, more expensive than any asian or ethnic areas, but complete.

              4 Replies
              1. re: bigjeff

                i remember this too! i think it was brighton beach... something about each piece of fruit being perfect and the owner being kind of a diva, hehe.

                    1. re: lambretta76

                      Man oh man, you can get most of the same fruit for so much less in...Chinatown...

                1. Craving gold kiwis, but can't find them anywhere. Very tasty fruit.

                  Look -->

                  8 Replies
                  1. re: Cheese Boy

                    They're 5 for $4.00 on FreshDirect right now, so not *that* rare I would think...

                    1. re: kathryn

                      Grossly overpriced. They're in season now coming in from NZ.
                      I'll get them in the burbs 3/$1 -- no problem.

                    2. re: Cheese Boy

                      they have them in Chinatown as well. How are they different from green kiwis? I don't care for the green ones.

                      1. re: buttertart

                        The gold kiwis taste like melon, banana, and a hint of citrus (lemon). Others will argue that they taste like pineapple and mango. Everyones tastebuds are different I suppose, but either way, the Gold's flavor is rather unique and very good.

                        Gold Kiwi -->

                        1. re: Cheese Boy

                          I love gold kiwis. They are also a bit sweeter as well.

                        2. re: buttertart

                          ya I seen them all over chinatown and flushing, just couldn't get past the weird pinched end (gross I know) but, good to know they are kinda good.

                          1. re: bigjeff

                            Brings all kinds of non-fruit-related things to mind, I acgree.