Have you ever had fruits from Asia? When I first moved to Florida after living in a small town in New Jersey for twenty one years, I was surprised to find so many different types of fruits in the grocery stores of Orlando. There were so many colors and shapes and names I could only attempt to pronounce, it almost felt as if I had left the country!
No matter where in the world you come from, chances are high that you have had your fair share of fruit throughout your life, but if you are like me and have not had the chance to explore past the common banana or strawberry, then the following list of 25 weird and exotic fruits from Asia you’ve probably never heard of is going to be quite the adventure for you!
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Declared Japan’s national fruit, sweet persimmons are popular around the world today. Persimmons are high in vitamins and minerals, especially tannin, which is linked to cell health and regulating blood flow. Resembling a tiny pumpkin, persimmons are very popular to bake with and can be used in any manner of dessert, from cake and pies, to cookies and bread.
A Southeast Asian fruit, the noni may lack visual appeal, but certainly makes up for it in medicinal properties. Noni juice helps protect against damage caused by strokes. The juice is also full of antioxidants, is anti-inflammatory, and antibacterial.
The Philippines are home to the santol fruit, an extremely sour, sub-acid fruit that resembles an apple. The seeds, along with youthful fruits, can actually be cannied and turned into marmalade and preserves. The roots of the fruit can be used as a tonic, and even applied in a poultice to treat ringworm.
Found mainly in Japan, yuzu resemble lemons and are very sour and tart. They are usually not eaten raw, but used for their zest and juice when cooking. Yuzu juice is traditionally used to make ponzu, a citrus soy sauce that is great in a marinade for chicken or fish.
Wood apples, like durian, can scare away potential consumers with its intense odor, but if you can push past the smell, the many health benefits of the wood apple will certainly be worth it. From relieving indigestion, constipation, and ulcers, wood apples are delicious when eaten raw, but especially when mashed and made into jam.