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Durian


Schielke
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I would love to hear eveybody's thoughts on durian fruit.

I have tried a smoothie made from durian and nearly vomited from the smell alone. We had to cover it up between our brave sips so the smell wouldnt overpower the room. I would discribe it as a cross between dirty diapers and propane.

Anthony Bourdain tried it in his Cook's Tour series and he seemed to enjoy it... that sick bastard. :laugh:

I read a legend about it that described the fruit's fall from grace. A king was going to throw an awesome party for some reason and he had his court magician make the most delicious fruit in all the land. The magician did so and the king was very pleased. For some reason though the magician was not invited to the party so he put a curse on the fruit that made it spiny and smell horrible, yet still taste delicious.

Another tidbit is that in some places where the fruit is available, you cannot take it on public transportation because it could break open and stink up the bus! :laugh:

What are your experiences with this interesting fruit?

Gimme what cha got for a pork chop!

-Freakmaster

I have two words for America... Meat Crust.

-Mario

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There is nothing that sick about enjoying Durian.

When I was in Singapore earlier this year, I hesitantly took a bite. I actually was surprised that I did not find it as repulsive as I had trained my mind into believing it would be. It was actually no worse than any other overly ripe fruit.

Chuck loved it and had several bites and had it on several occasions.

I must say I found the cakes and confections made with it not to my liking at all. But again, I understand how others find them great.

There are many different kinds of Durian one can get. Some more flavorful than others. Some stronger in aroma then others.

Our hosts had a friend join us for dinner one night. This young man had been sent a long distance to buy us some Durian that is considered t he best one could ever have. In Singapore it is banned to carry Durian in trains and most taxi drivers would not take you if you had it with you. This man had been sent to fetch this great Durian for us as he had a motorcycle. He apologized to me as he handed me a helmet from his motorcycle chest. He was worried that it would be smelly. Well it was again not as bad as I had expected.

I have also tasted it frozen and it is quite delicious that way. In Montreal I was in a Chinese store where the owner offered some chunks of frozen Durian to us after we seemed pleasantly curious. I did not take any. I politely said I was too full to eat a morsel more. In Singapore I tried some and with that one bite, I can well imagine why many would eat it for breakfast. If you love concentrated sweet and the taste that comes with such high level of somewhat fermented sweetness, you will love it.

I too would be eager to know what the others think of this.

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Eating it was alright (not that it tasted good) but being in a room with it was hell. My nose decided that there was something foul in the room (not taht there wasn't) , figured it should protect itself, andf just shut down. I don't see the attraction.

-Jason

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I tried it and liked it in a funny sort of way.

The smell didn't bother me.  The burps afterwards were wicked though, and that kept me from havign it again.

I am with you Beachfan. It was the aftertaste that was not as pleasant and also the flavor it leaves on your tongue.

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I've had durian many years ago in Singapore. My client was eager for me try this and to see what I thought. I don't think the smell really bothered me that much, but all the hype made me more apprehensive than I needed to be. I rather enjoyed the creamy, custardy texture, but the flavour is hard to describe. It’s not something that I can imagine eating lots of in one sitting.

My mother has told me that durian is considered to be a fruit that is "heating" to the body and a "cooling" food needs to be consumed with it for balance. Apparently, my father had purchased a durian but no one dared to eat it with him. Since it is quite expensive and my Dad is not one to waste food, he ate the whole thing. Unfortunately, his lips became quite swollen from having overindulged.

I was in Chinatown this weekend and the durian fragrance permeated the air but since I did not wish to have that charming odour in my apartment, I refrained from purchasing any. However, I did indulge in lychees, mangosteens and rambutans. That's one thing I miss about Asia, the ability to buy such fruits inexpensively.

Here's an ice cream recipe if anyone is daring enough.

Durian Ice Cream

As mentioned, in Singapore, durians are banned from taxis, buses, ferries and the planes of Singapore Airlines. In their spotless subway system, the authorities have posted the following signs:

nodurian.gif

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As mentioned, in Singapore, durians are banned from taxis, buses, ferries and the planes of Singapore Airlines. In their spotless subway system, the authorities have posted the following signs:

nodurian.gif

Thanks for posting that photograph. You are so right, the hype about finding Durians repulsive was so great that I really thought I was going to kiss death. It was no way close to that hyped smell or taste. I too found it almost too sweet and custardy and as I said, those that like sweet and that flavor, would love it.

It was expensive as fruits can get. I do not remember how much it cost, but it was far more expensive than any fruit we would get there.

We ate lots of fruit in Asia. And they are always so full of flavor.

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If you live in Seattle, you can get fresh durians at Juyjamaya (spelling) in the International District. I think they come in a little bag so you dont have to hold onto the spines and risk dropping it.

Not sure about the price either since I knew I wouldnt buy one. It is very interesting to me that some people dont mind the smell. I do think it is horrible, but that is probably a personal thing. :raz:

Gimme what cha got for a pork chop!

-Freakmaster

I have two words for America... Meat Crust.

-Mario

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It is very interesting to me that some people dont mind the smell.  I do think it is horrible, but that is probably a personal thing.  :raz:

Just as many millions around the world find the Barbeque smell we so love in the US and have also bottled as an essence a horrible smell.

I happen to be one of those people. That fake smell is far more horrible to me than Durian. Even though I am not sated with my Durian adventure. I can live t he rest of my life without ever having to taste it again.

And then there are those that find curry repulsive...

And the list would go on...

I think so much of all of this has got to do with taste, what we grow up knowing.. While we hear only bad things about Durian, I have a film Chuck made of some of the "Most" hip Singaporeans, tastemakers and trendsetters of that agreed very small nation, extol the virtues and delights of Durian. It is funny every time I see it; it makes me understand how this world is so strange so beautiful for it.

Everything someone holds as precious could just as easily be reduced to horrible. It is a great way of humbling each of us in reality. For nothing we have or do can ever be placed to highly really, for each of those things has the real risk of being reduced to nothing by one that it means nothing to.

You are far better than the teeming millions around the world that have many such notions and are not able to even talk about them. Good for you!

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I had durian not to long ago. I didn't think it smelled to bad and the taste wasn't that gross. I wouldn't classify it as being good but not the worst thing ive eaten in my life. You know what i described the taste as though. You guys remember that pink medicine your parents gave you when you were sick? the one they kept in the fridge. I think it was some form of pennasilin(sp) I thought it tasted exactly like that.

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If you have a cold, or nasal allergies, it tastes great.

What makes it do so? Any ideas? That is very interesting to know. Maybe you can share more details on the food as medicine thread. Or are you saying this because of the fabled smell?

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At La Casa Gelato in Vancouver BC I was told (perhaps in an effort to con me into trying it) that durian is their most popular flavor. It's quite delicious, too. Then again, I don't find the smell offensive. I think I like durian-flavored things better than straight durian fruit, but I'm not a fan of tropical fruit textures in general--too custardy.

Matthew Amster-Burton, aka "mamster"

Author, Hungry Monkey, coming in May

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I was on the bus in Vancouver one day (heading home from work I believe). Someone had gone shopping in Vancouver's Chinatown and bought a durian. I didn't know WHERE on the bus it was, but I knew it was Durian (Well... I think old durian 'shells' are sometimes tossed into the dumpsters in Chinatown so you get the stench wafting out as you walk thru Chinatown sometimes...).

One person got on the bus, a few minutes later started cursing about the stench of the durian (he had no idea what it actually was, hee :)

I think he actually got off the bus before his desired stop

Pretty much once you know what a durian smells like, you'll either bear it, or really REALLY find it offensive.

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Is there any genetic predisposition to disliking it? Do some people smell or taste something in durian that others do not? I ask because I've heard that some people cannot stand mangoes, for whatever reason these people detect a taste and smell like turpentine.

Durian smells unpleasant to me, but not as awful as some people make it out to be.

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HELP IT'S DURIAN SEASON!!

Hi- I'm new to the board;but I'm an American expat living in Singapore.

Let me tell you it's freakin everywhere- DURIANS! DURIANS! DURIANS!!

Supermarkets, wetmarkets, on the streets... Yikes. Oddly enough

Durian flavoured ice cream, pies, cakes, rice cakes are really delicious.

It's sort of buttery Vanilla- minus the odor. Hee. The smell? It reminds

me of that sulfer smell in Hot Springs in Japan.

You won't find Durian in the heart of the city near the business

districts or posh areas near Orchard Rd. Nope, the Durians are usually

found in the people's markets near their condo's or in funkier neighborhoods

and older sections of Singapore. The stalls open in the early afternoon

and stay open into the night. The favorite the locals like eating Durian

is right at the fruit stall with the usually Chinese man dressed in t-shirt,

rubber slippers and grungy shorts hacking open a fruit right befor their

eyes. Your suppose to eat the Durian then wash it down with Mangosteens

to neutralize the intense flavour.

Personally I'm not too crazy about them. I prefer, just Mangosteens.

Now that's food for the Gods.

It's illegal to transport Durians on Singapore airlines etc.. but the locals

have their methods. Hee. They usually freeze it over night and wrap

it with newspaper, tape, more newspaper, tin foil, saran wrap, more tape,

more newspaper, baggies, more saran wrap then stick it in an air tight container.

Each person has their own special wrapping system;but you get the idea about

how much effort goes into it. Some people even brag about bringing them

to New York, Sydney or London on Singapore Airlines. Hee. True story.

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You won't find Durian in the heart of the city near the business

districts or posh areas near Orchard Rd.  Nope, the Durians are usually

found in the people's markets near their condo's or in funkier neighborhoods

and older sections of Singapore.  The stalls open in the early afternoon

and stay open into the night.  The favorite the locals like eating Durian

is right at the fruit stall with the usually Chinese man dressed in t-shirt,

rubber slippers and grungy shorts hacking open a fruit right befor their

eyes. Your suppose to eat the Durian then wash it down with Mangosteens

to neutralize the intense flavour.

I was able to find some at Takashimaya at Orchard Rd. Hee Hee!

:biggrin:

And of course at the Tekka Market! (Wet Market)

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Really? Takashimaya. It's EVERYWHERE.  :)

  It's getting to be like bad Sci-fi film

  ATTACK OF THE KILLER DURIANS.

If you are good to the chef at Nan Chung (sp?) at the Four Seasons, maybe he can make you Durian Dessert Pan Cakes. Or better yet, if you are very good to him, he could make them with mangoes instead.

That was my favorite dessert in Singapore.

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I had durian candy that was innocently placed on an Administrative Assistant's desk by a Law Partner who had just returned from Singapore. Some JOKE! To me, it didn't taste bad....at first. I was sort of mangoey and honey-like upon first chew, but then turned hot and oniony and garlicky and disgusting. Since it was like taffy, I had no choice but to deal with the odor and disgusting aftertaste. But I'm still alive.

I understand that the most exclusive hotels in Singapore (such as Raffles) have also banned Durian eating on their premises and in rooms.

There are some pretty smelly foods that people will eat in this country as well. The Ginko tree (where Ginko Biloba comes from) was planted throughout Washington, DC for sidewalk shade because they grow quickly and don't have large root systems (to buckle the sidewalks). Downside: They create bushels and bushels of small fruits that smell like dog poop when stepped on. From what I'm told, they make good jam. DC has to spray the trees every year so they don't reproduce. Maybe they should just make jam?

And don't even get me started on ramps, or poke sallet (or is that salad?) PEE-YOU!!!

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