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Sep 24, 2011 07:34 PM

What are these?

Are these unripe jujubes?
(My guess based on an internet search for Taiwanese fruits.)

I got them at an Asian market. First time I've seen them there.
The register clerk said he had no idea what they are and that it was the first time he's ever seen them (I'd say he's in his late 50s or early 60s). Another employee at the store said she didn't know either. A shopper didn't know the English name for them but said they can be eaten out of hand as a snack.

Also, any suggestions for how to enjoy them?

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  1. Yup, sure looks like jujubes.

    Aside from eating them fresh, you can dry them and use them in soups.

    1. Yep! They need to be more brown to be flavorful.

      1. I thought they were guavas at first, but that lonely little leaf in your pic might be the tell all here.
        My guess (without having done a lot of research here) is that you have fresh dates perhaps?

        Look -->

        3 Replies
        1. re: Cheese Boy

          Interesting -- the fresh dates I bought last week looked like this post from the same blog:

          Different species? Different level of ripeness?

          I believe that jujubes are sometimes called Chinese dates -- and Cheese Boy's link would seem to confirm it.

          1. re: Cheese Boy

            Definitely NOT guavas -- I know guavas.


            "Jujube - [Red Date, Chinese Date, Annab (Persia (dried)), Taejuja (Korea), Ziziphus zizyphus]

            Jujube fruit trees were first domesticated in India about 11,0000 years ago. Their natural range is uncertain because of long cultivation but may have extended from Syria to southern China. They belong to the Buckthorn family (Rhamnaceae)....

            The fruit is initially green but turns red when fully ripe and eventually shrivels. It is very light, almost foam like, moderately sweet. and apple-like in flavor....

            Fresh and candied jujubes are eaten as snacks. Dried they are a flavoring ingredient for soups and stews. In China dried jujubes (hong zao) may be smoked (hei zao) and will then be black instead of red. Jujubes are also used for teas and beverages. Jujube teas are ..."

            1. re: racer x

              If they've got a single large seed in the centre, then they're probably jujubes (zao zi, in Taiwan). The small ones are usually ripened (until fully red), dried and used in sweets and traditional medicinal soups. The larger ones (about the size of a plum, but more oblong) are very good green, as a fruit. The texture reminds me a bit of an unripe pear, with a mild flavour.

          2. They're definitely jujubes, but judging from the color, they're not unripe. I would say they're probably pretty sweet as they are. They're crisp to bite into, but then have the texture of a mealy apple. I like them at this stage better than when they're completely brown.

            1 Reply
            1. re: inaplasticcup

              This particular batch is not very sweet. Just a little bit of sweetness and a lot of what I call "green flavor." They are pretty crisp though; the texture is like that of a crisp pear.

              I've tried eating several as they are, but they just aren't very good that way.

            2. We Vietnamese eat those a lot. The vietnamese word for them translates to "chinese apple" which is what I've known it as all my life. They are ripe when they turn brown, and will be much sweeter. They are crisp and dry with a refreshingly sweet, floral flavor.

              From the picture on wikipedia, I guess the english name for these are jujubes.


              They are quite delicious, although I don't particularly care for the dry texture. I prefer juicier fruit myself, but my wife she loves these.