I promised to write a post on the fruits of Colombia, so here it is! The downside is, of course: No recipe today. But when you see what I’ve got to say about the fruits in Colombia, you’ll forget the missing recipe, and hop a flight down to Colombia to taste some new and exciting fruit!
Variety of common fruit:
First off, there was such a variety of fruit available in Colombia, it was truly unbelievable! Walking down the isle of the grocery store was walking down the isle of my imagination – the colors, textures, sizes and shapes of the various fruit available was truly astonishing! Of course, there were the expected varieties: oranges, limes, mangoes. But there were even varieties of these that I didn’t know existed. And the ones in my pictures are just the ones available while I was taking note! I imagine that there were different mangoes in another grocer, and probably would be new varieties the next day too. There were even three different varieties of Lime on the shelves and two kinds of Papaya on the shelves.
Mango: Tommy Mango, Sugar Mango, Apple Mango, Kent Mango
Lime: Tahitian Lime, Key Lime, and “Common Lime”Papaya: Golden “Hawaiian” Papaya, Red Papaya
Pineapple: Red Spanish and Cayenne
You see the varieties of Pineapple? There’s a tall display in the center of the above photograph with Golden Pineapple. On the bottom right is a red Pineapple, and a purple Pineapple. And yes, they had different labels and different prices too!
New Fruit that I tried:
Guanabana: This is the green spiney fruit at the bottom of the picture above, with a cut open one next to it. It’s tall, and the flesh looks almost like little silk sacs with the seeds suspended inside them. It is very sweet, though the texture takes some getting used to. I am really looking forward to trying this again, and will be buying some if I see it around here!
Zapote: This looks almost like a brown coconut. It has a brown, flakey skin. But when you cut it open, you’re greeted with a smell almost like a fruity brown sugar, and the color of the fruit flesh is bright pink. I ate it right out of the shell of the fruit with a spoon, leaving the shell at the end. It was very sweet, not very juicy, and certainly a delight! I think I would like to try taking the fruit out, chilling it, and eating it like ice-cream. I think the flavor and texture are just right!Tomate De Arbol: Literally translated, this is a “Tree Tomato”, and looks like one. Just as surprising as it looks on the outside, when you cut it open, it still resembles a tomato! But the similarities stop with the appearance. You eat a Tomate De Arbol by cutting it open and removing the skin, then eating the entire inside of the fruit. It is sweet, with just a hint of sour tang giving it a very exotic and exciting flavor. I saw juices made from Tomate De Arbol all over the place in Colombia, though I was too busy eating it fresh to try a juice.
Guava: I am well familiar with Guava. I’ve had it here as the occasional grocery store treat, as well as in my travels to the Caribbean. But it was fantastic to become reacquainted with it! The flavor of Guava is completely unique, and simply cannot be described – if you haven’t had it, you must!
Fruits that I will try next time:
There were just so many fruits there, I couldn’t try them all! Believe me, I wanted to, but with activities, alcohol and restaurants, and beach time, my Fruit Tasting time was slightly limited. As you can see from the list above, I did make some time for Fruit Tasting, and will continue on my next trip. And I don’t mind saving a bit of anticipation for my future travels to Colombia, and to share with you!
These are fruits that I saw and didn’t have a chance to try. They looked delicious! And I am definitely looking forward to my next trip to give these the time that they deserve!
Granadilla: This is a gourd-looking fruit with a hard green exterior. As I understand it, the inside is quite liquid, and quite delicious! You cut it open and almost drink the flesh out of the gourd-like skin of the fruit.
Cherimoya: This is an amazing looking fruit, similar in size and shape to a Guava, but with a ridged exterior. I understand that the flesh is soft, also like a ripe guava, and quite sweet.
Lulo: This fruit was everywhere, and the only reason I didn’t get around to trying it was because the street vendors, for some reason, never seemed to have it. I guess they didn’t have it because other people got to it first! It is shaped, sized, and colored like an orange. And side by side, they would be difficult to tell apart at a glance. Lulo is smoother on the outside than an orange. As I understand it, this is rarely eaten directly, and is most often made in to a drink or smoothie.
Mamoncillo: This looks like a small lime with a slightly browner tint to the skin. Unlike a lime, however, the skin on this is cracked open, more like a Lychee. I did see this at a few street vendors in passing, but didn’t see it often enough to have a chance to try some. It is definitely on my list for next time!
I expect that there are others that I simply must try! The list above is just the list of fruits that I noticed myself, while I had the time and presence of mind to take notes on. The next time I go, I will take some serious Fruit Tasting time, set aside for the sole purpose of finding and trying new and exciting fruits!
- What are your favorite foreign fruits?
- Have you fallen in love with a fruit that you cannot buy locally?
- Have you ever tasted a foreign fruit that just knocked your socks off in every way possible?