When I came acre these little fruit recently, I took them to be some sort of dwarf peach, especially as they also have a ‘velvety’ skin to match the general appearance. The store, however, labeled them as ‘Pluot’, which, I have to confess meant nothing to me. I did a little research, though, and it appears that a Pluot is just one of several hybrid crossings of the plum and the apricot, others being apriums, apriplums, or plumcots. As it happens, there are even several different varieties of pluots themselves and it appears to be that the type I purchased is the ‘Splash Pluot’.
As you can see, the resemblance, once cut, is still very peach-like, but one difference I noted is that the stone is a bit easier to ‘pop’ out. The aroma was vaguely plum-like, and not very intense, and the flavour was, I would say, somewhat a cross between a plum and a mandarin orange, with the ‘orange’ component being quite faint. It does taste nice but the consistency was not especially appealing to me. First, I dislike the velvety skin both on peaches and here but the flesh in this fruit is not especially succulent. The texture is a bit ‘mushy’ to my mind and, while I could overlook that if the flavour was more exciting, the overall effect here was a bit underwhelming.
It strikes me that, if halved and stoned, the fruit could be glazed in a sweetish sauce and would them make a very attractive edible garnish if arrayed around say, a baked ham or roast of pork. I don’t think I would bother with them as a hand-fruit in future though…
Ages ago, I published a post featuring a little South American fruit known as the Granadilla and I mentioned, not only that it is sometimes called the Passion Fruit, there is also a smaller, purple fruit (also from South America, that goes by the same name. I came across these just recently and I was curious to see how they compared…
The purple Passion Fruit is a bit smaller than the Granadilla and a little less elongated. Inside, it has the same cluster of small black seeds (which are edible), but the rest of the pulp is different. In my post on the granadilla, I mention that the soft material had a custard-like texture but a rather off-putting, gelatinous appearance. Here, in the passion fruit, this soft equivalent has an opaque yellow appearance and this gives it an even more custard like quality.
As with the Granadilla, the taste is both tangy and sweet but the Passion Fruit has a slight bitterness in the background. I described the Granadilla as being somewhat like Kiwi Fruit but the best way I can describe the taste of this fruit is as a cross between strawberry and grapefruit. I far prefer this to the Granadilla but I also will not be buying them often. Each cost about four dollars which means the experienced worked out to about two dollars per tablespoon. It’s good… just not that good!
This is a rather interesting little fruit you may wish to try if you get the chance. I found it at our local supermarket labelled as a ‘Spiny Melon’ but it is also known as the ‘Horned Melon’, ‘Blow fish fruit’ and ‘Melano’. It is native to Africa but it is now being cultivated in the Antipodes, South America and also California, which is where, I suspect, mine was grown. To be honest, while I was glad to try something new, I can’t say I much enjoyed the experience… Continue reading “Foodstuff: Spiny Melon”
The name ‘Guyabano’ meant nothing to me when I picked this beverage up at our local grocery store and I didn’t immediately recognize the picture on the can that shows a fruit somewhat resembling a Chayote with a nodular, almost spiny skin. As it turns out, however, ‘Guyabano’ is the Filipino name for what is elsewhere known as a ‘Soursop’ and some of my readers will recall that I tried Soursop Juice a while ago.
This particular product is a ‘nectar’ rather than a juice, which means it is made from a puree of the fruit with sugar added, and the taste experience was somewhat different. To my mind, this was very like a ‘creamy’ grapefruit juice but with a very floral aftertaste. One of my readers commenting on my Soursop Juice post likened the juice to Persimmon and I would tend to agree that there is a similarity, but without the rather nutty under-taste that Persimmons can have. Anyway, I rather liked it but I also found I just a little too sweet to be refreshing. It would, however, make an interesting cooking medium, I think, and I will report on any experiments along those lines.
For Iqaluit residents who would like to try this, it can be found at Northmart in the same aisle as the exotic foods…
As far as I can recall, my only experiences with guava have been a jar of Guava Jelly I once received as a gift, and a can of Guava Juice at one time or another, neither of which left any lasting impression with me. Until now, I had not only actually seen the real article, I really had no idea what a guava looked like. Just the other day, however, some appeared at our local Northmart store and, as my readers already know, I can’t resist giving new foods a try… Continue reading “Foodstuff: Guava”
Asian pears have been appearing fairly regularly in our local Co-op lately. I am not a huge fan of pears generally, although I enjoy pear juice, and I rarely buy or eat the western varieties. I have eaten an Asian pear once before making this current purchase, but it was many years ago and I really can’t now recall my initial impressions (which suggests they weren’t particularly strong, one way or the other). Anyway, after having passed them by several times without being tempted, I decided to pick one up to re-acquaint myself with the fruit… Continue reading “Foodstuff: Asian Pear”
This curious object, which looks for all the world like a little wooden apple, is yet another of those obscure culinary items that occasionally turn up in our local Co-op from time to time. They were identified as ‘Sharron Fruit’ on a hand lettered sign (a name which meant nothing to me), but each of the little fruit had a tiny sticky label on them bearing the name ‘Mangosteen’ (which was at least familiar). The appellation ‘Sharron Fruit’, it turned out, was actually the name of the Company from which the fruit had been purchased so it was obvious that the store employee stocking the shelves was not too familiar with the item either. In any event, whatever the name, I had never seen these before and naturally had to investigate… Continue reading “Foodstuff: Mangosteen”
This rather interesting looking item with the attractive, rather reptilian skin, appeared in our local Co-op recently. It was identified as a ‘Cherimoya’ but, while the name was somewhat familiar to me, I doubt if I could have identified as a fruit. After doing a bit of a search on-line, I discovered that it is native to South America (although cultivated as far north as California) and is also grown in southern Asia. Wikipedia tells me it is also known as a ‘custard apple’ in some quarters, but I have to confess to never having heard that name before. On tasting the fruit, however, it is rather apparent how that particular nickname came about… Continue reading “Foodstuff: Cherimoya”
This is an interesting little item I picked up at our local grocery not long ago. The name sounded vaguely Spanish to me and put me in mind of the more familiar ‘pomegranate’, from which we derive the word ‘grenade’. As it happens, the name is indeed Spanish in origin, and a little bit of research revealed that the fruit is native to South America (although it is now cultivated in Africa, Australia and New Guinea). Apparently, there is another variety of the fruit which is purple in color and they are both sometimes known as ‘Passion fruit’, especially Australia, the UK and America. That name was somewhat familiar to me, as is the ‘Passion flower’, which apparently is part of the same vine-like plant that produces the fruit. In any event, is was very curious to see what this curious foodstuff might be like… Continue reading “Foodstuff: Granadilla”
This curious item, which looks a little like a russet potato with lots of eyes, appeared on the shelves of our local grocery store labeled as ‘Cactus Pears’. The name was unfamiliar to me but, when I Googled it, I discovered that the same article is often called ‘Prickly Pears’, which I have heard of before. I should note here that, according to Wikipedia, the name ‘Prickly Pear’ is shared by quite a few different things but is most commonly used to refer to this particular fruit.
The cactus pear, also known as ‘cactus fig’ in addition to ‘prickly pear’, does indeed come from a type of cactus colloquially known as the ‘Paddle Cactus’. I was surprised when I saw a picture of the plant as it looks exactly like a variety we had growing in our garden in Libya when I was a small child. However, I can’t for the life of me remember any ‘pears’ on them at all. The cactus is most associated with Mexico but it also grows in South America and, I was astounded to learn, can be found as far North as New England and southern Ontario. In any event, the fruit looked really interesting and, naturally, I had to give it a try… Continue reading “Cactus Pear”