If you’re an exotic foods afficianado – if the supermarket aisles of classic favorites like apples and oranges strike you as hopelessly pedestrian and everyday – take heart. There’s a new fruit on the block, and everything about it, from it’s name to its color, shape, texture, and taste, is about as exotic as it gets.
According to a recent New York Times article by Jeff Gordinier, the Dragon Fruit “looks like a hot pink bulb ringed with a jester’s crown of curly greenish petals. Slice it open, and there’s a white (or, on rare occasions, fuchsia) scoop of sweet pulp speckled with tiny black seeds.” Now is that wow-inspiring or what?
But wait, there’s more. The Dragon fruit, also commonly referred to as Pitaya or Pitahaya fruit, are produced by the Pitaya cactus, which thrives only in hot, semi-arid climates. Though its native to Central America, the cactus is now mainly grown in Vietnam and Malaysia. It’s mainly night-blooming and is generally pollenated by bats and moths.
But the oooooooh factor is only one reason to try Dragon fruit. Even if you’re someone who could resist the idea of eating a flamingo-pink night blooming bat-pollenated Vietnamese cactus fruit, it’s just healthy as all get-out (high in fiber, carotene, calcium, niacin, iron and more). Enthusiasts claim its beneficial properties include lowering blood pressure and enhancing weight loss.
And perhaps best of all, dragon fruit are tasty, too. The flesh is soft and sweet, and the juice is flavorful enough to be a component in everything from smoothies to vodka. Find out more about the dragon fruit here.