Sunday, December 15, 2013

Silver Linings: the Fruits of Ecuador

One way in which I am enjoying life in Ecuador, is by trying out all the exotic and rare fruits this country has to offer. Generally, there are the exotic fruits from the coast, that grow in the hot and humid climate of Ecuador's coast, and then there are the fruits from the highlands, which are very difficult to find in Europe, because of the unique combination of altitude and year-round mild climate that is so typical for the Andean highlands.

Tropical fruits

I only have this one to share (and it's not a rare fruit at all):



When I ordered coconut water, I didn't expect them to come and drop a coconut with a straw on my table...

And then I discovered that passion fruit is yellow here instead of black (still tastes equally delicious):



Fruits from the highlands

By no means this list is complete, but so far I've tried the following oddities:



Ovos - they are something like a sweet olive. Weird, to say the least.



The chirimoya or custard apple - maybe we had one that was overly ripe, but this thing was revoltingly sweet.



The "pepino dulce" or melon pear tastes like a mixture of melon and cucumber. Odd, and not something I'd recommend.



The "guanabana" or soursop is a delcious fruit that is used for smoothies. It takes quite some time and effort to clean the fruit which contains big seeds, but the flavor of this fruit is amazing.



The "naranjilla" or lulo is family of the tomato (nightshade family), looks like a little orange and tastes like a slightly bitter mashup version of rhubarb and lime. Might sound odd, tastes pretty refreshingly.



"Tuna" is the local prickly pear - and it tastes just a little less sweet than figs.



Tha "babaco" is a large fruit, that is rather sour, and works very well in smoothies.



The "salak" has snake skin, looks like garlic with a pit on the inside, and tastes in between green apples and chestnut.

That's all the oddities I've been sampling so far - and I'll post more when I come across them! Check out my #weridfruitsfromEcuador series on Instagram as well :)

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