Brasilmagic\’s Weblog

Venting to the World

Exotic fruits and me

1970’s: you would see me feeling old and confident enough to walk to the nearest little deli and buy 10 pieces of Ping Pong chewing gum. Anyone over 40 who grew up in Brazil knows how “chiclete Ping Pong” was a staple amongst kids. I still remember the price for 10 of them: 1 cruzeiro, the currency before the real took over.

During my teenage years in Brasilia, my guilty pleasure was to buy Kit Kat and “bomboms” , which were a real treat. I grew up in a household where my mother knew a lot about nutrition, so our meals were very healthy. Since the 70’s we had whole wheat bread, brown rice and skim milk in our house. We even had soy steak for lunch sometimes (don’t forget that lunch is the main meal in Brazil, something that is hard for me to get used nowadays when I go there). So sneaking in some chocolate and candy was my way to rebel from all that healthful lifestyle 🙂

Several decades later, my guilty pleasure is fruit, not your basic apple, bananas and oranges, but any fruit that is not easily found-and unfortunately, pricey. Besides a need to stay healhy and looking fit, I was also influenced by a friend from Bosnia who consumes large amounts of fruit. With my sweet tooth, fruit is the closet I can get to the sweet taste I crave. Otherwise I would be eating candy and M&M’s in a daily basis:)

The other day I had a big craving for pineapple. Pineapple in Brazil is dirt cheap and sweet.  We really take it for granted there. Brazil has wonderful fresh, juicy and sweet fruit. I can find papaya, mangos and even guava here in the US, but it is often tasteless and not ripe. I ran to Whole Foods to satisfy my craving and paid 6 dollars for 4 slices of pineapple…at least they were sweet and melted in my mouth!

Recently I fell in love with kiwiberry. It is a mini kiwi that looks like green grapes. Sweet and probably full of Vitamin C. Problem: the price is scary. Better stick to the other more affordable berries I also love.

Finally, the fruit that really rocked my world is Durian. Anyone from Thailand and Hong Kong knows what that is. Durian is a big round fruit which looks a bit like a green pineaple from the outside-and smells horrible when ripe. You really have to either keep it outside your house or throw the carcass out as soon as you cut it-preferably far from your front door…Inside the Durian however, there are 4 or 5 big black seeds surrounded by the sweetest and creamiest pulp you will ever eat. Simply heavenly. No wonder durian is known as the fruit that “smells like hell and tastes like heaven”. Serve the pulp cold (one seed per guest) for an exotic and delicious desert.




March 28, 2009 - Posted by | Health

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