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KennethT

Mangosteen season?

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Does anyone know when mangosteen season is inSE Asia? I had always thought it was a pretty short season from late spring through mid summer....

 

I'm in Saigon at the moment and saw a vendor selling them out of a basket strapped to the back of a motorbike. But he was the only one I've seen with them all week.... 

 

I didn't get any... But I was curious if anyone knew any more info... Tomorrow's another day!

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It is usually mid-to-late summer here in southern China, near the Vietnam border. They tend to turn up around August..And, yes, the season is short.

 

However, I also noticed them on sale just yesterday. I suspect, but don't know, that they are being forced in greenhouse type environments (not easy with tree fruits, I suspect)  or some other technological fashion. Either that or they are being imported from somewhere further south where it is still warmer.

 

When I first came to China, I loved how everything was very seasonable, but just recently we are getting fruit and vegetables at all the wrong times. With a noticeable dip in quality/flavour.


Edited by liuzhou second thoughts and typos (log)
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I wouldn't suspect greenhouse mangosteen since the trees are notoriously hard to transplant. I became so fascinated with them a few years ago, I actually researched it. The trees take a long time to be mature enough to bear fruit (15-20 years!) and most dont survive past a few years after transplant.

 

Since the importation of fresh mangosteens are prohibited in the US, a few companies tried to creat orchards inPuerto Rico but with no success.

 

I wonder if they're being grown in Northern Australia? That may be a tropical climate and would be their summer now...

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8 minutes ago, KennethT said:

I wouldn't suspect greenhouse mangosteen since the trees are notoriously hard to transplant. I became so fascinated with them a few years ago, I actually researched it. The trees take a long time to be mature enough to bear fruit (15-20 years!) and most dont survive past a few years after transplant.

 

Since the importation of fresh mangosteens are prohibited in the US, a few companies tried to creat orchards inPuerto Rico but with no success.

 

I wonder if they're being grown in Northern Australia? That may be a tropical climate and would be their summer now...

 

Yes.That is pretty much what I was thinking, too.

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I am fascinated by exotic (to me) foods, and have never had a mangosteen, so went Googling.

 

It seems according to this acticle at Food52 and also according to Wikipedia, that fresh mangosteens are now legal for import into the US since 2007. I don't know about y'all, but I will be keeping an eye open for them at my local Asian Market.

 


> ^ . . ^ <

 

 

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All the mangosteens I've seen in NYC are frozen or defrosted... And disgusting compared to the fresh ones.

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I've never seen really fresh (and good) mangosteens here in the US, although I have seen and bought sort-of-fresh ones at Chinese/Vietnamese/"Asian" (I hate that word)/International markets/groceries.** Whether some of them were brought in frozen then thawed out for sale I'm not sure. But they all have been uniformly bad, in line with what KennethT reports, especially as I certainly remember eating the fresh ones all through the time I grew up in SE Asia. (And getting my hands and clothes stained occasionally from squeezing-and-breaking the shell.)

 

** And they are some of the MOST EXPENSIVE things you can buy in these places...and for what, bad fruit...


Edited by huiray (log)
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Having lived in Asia for several years, I developed an unfortunate love for mangosteens. At the time I had no idea that they would be so difficult, essentially impossible, to find after I left.  Not only are they my favorite fruit on the palate, they're my favorite to behold.  I never grew complacent about cutting into the luxurious purple orb and finding the snow-white clusters of tangy goodness inside.

 

That's been many decades ago but I've continued following the story about somehow getting fresh mangosteens in the US.

 

So, imagine my pleasure a few years back to read that they were being imported.

 

Houston has one of the largest Asian immigrant populations in the US and, as a result, a great many Asian markets.  I've found fresh mangosteens in the produce department at 99 Ranch, H-Mart, Thai Lao, Viet Hoa, among others.  And, despite the fact that even from the outside they're not so beautiful as the ones I routinely bought when I lived in Asia, I paid (dearly, as Huiray says) for them and took them home.

 

Cutting into them is heartbreaking.  Hoping to see fat white juicy sweet tangy clusters nestled in their purple nest and finding instead small ugly brown tasteless ones finally became just too much to bear.

 

I've given up.

 

Such a longing persists, however.  Sometimes I've even wondered if perhaps I would have been better off not to have fallen in love with them in the first place.

 

But it's true.  With the mangosteen as with other things, it's better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all.

 

 

 

 


Edited by Jaymes (log)
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I don't understand why rappers have to hunch over while they stomp around the stage hollering.  It hurts my back to watch them. On the other hand, I've been thinking that perhaps I should start a rap group here at the Old Folks' Home.  Most of us already walk like that.

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Rokay,

 

Thanks for the education, huiray and Jaymes.

 

I won't look for them anymore here.

 

Great minds think alike, Jaymes, because the "It's better to have loved..." quote was something I was going to say after you said this:

 

13 hours ago, Jaymes said:

 

I've given up.

 

Such a longing persists, however.  Sometimes I've even wondered if perhaps I would have been better off not to have fallen in love with them in the first place.

 

But it's true.  With the mangosteen as with other things, it's better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all.

 

 

 

 

 


> ^ . . ^ <

 

 

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On 12/30/2015 at 1:54 PM, Jaymes said:

Having lived in Asia for several years

 

I seem to recall you have lived in the Philippines and Hong Kong - one part of SE Asia and one part of E Asia. I was unaware you had lived in Turkmenistan or Iran or Tamil Nadu and other such places in Asia, but perhaps you will fill us in on that.

 

On 12/30/2015 at 1:54 PM, Jaymes said:

Houston has one of the largest Asian immigrant populations in the US and, as a result, a great many Asian markets.

 

I suspect you mean E/SE Asian immigrants and E/SE Asian markets?  I doubt you were thinking of markets like Patel Brothers (for example, which would be Gujarati) in terms of finding mangosteens...

 

And if an average British person were reading this he/she would be thinking of someone from the Indian subcontinent anyway, when he/she read "Asian immigrants" or "Asian markets"...


Edited by huiray (log)

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2 hours ago, huiray said:

I seem to recall you have lived in the Philippines and Hong Kong - one part of SE Asia and one part of E Asia. 

 

 

So, like I said, "Having lived in Asia for several years..."


I don't understand why rappers have to hunch over while they stomp around the stage hollering.  It hurts my back to watch them. On the other hand, I've been thinking that perhaps I should start a rap group here at the Old Folks' Home.  Most of us already walk like that.

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3 hours ago, huiray said:

 

I doubt you were thinking of markets like Patel Brothers (for example, which would be Gujarati) in terms of finding mangosteens...

 

 

 

Okay, we have a Patel Brothers market less than a mile away from our house. Are you saying this might be a place to find good mangosteens? Or should I just give up for finding any in the US as I had concluded earlier? What did you mean by Gujarati? Mr. Google says it's an Indo-Aryan people, mostly from the Gujarat western state of India, and their language.

 

I have several other Indian markets close too, where I constantly find produce that I am completely ignorant of, but would love to learn about. So if that is a good place to hunt decent mangosteens, please kindly share your knowledge.

 

Asia is a huge continent (the hugest) and people don't mean any harm or insult by referring to it without more specificity. Most folks realize it also includes Siberia, and I don't think anyone is looking for mangosteens from there. :)


> ^ . . ^ <

 

 

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Today, I checked on the mangosteens in the local supermarket (in China - the one in Asia) to see if I could identify where the out-of-season fruit was coming from. There was no indication. I asked the woman on the weigh station and she looked at me as if I was mad and said "China" . (I guess she meant the one in Asia.)  But I suspect she would also say that if I asked her where the Spanish olives came from.

 

Anyway, they were looking past their best, so I passed on them for now.


Edited by liuzhou (log)
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6 hours ago, Thanks for the Crepes said:

 

Okay, we have a Patel Brothers market less than a mile away from our house. Are you saying this might be a place to find good mangosteens? Or should I just give up for finding any in the US as I had concluded earlier? What did you mean by Gujarati? Mr. Google says it's an Indo-Aryan people, mostly from the Gujarat western state of India, and their language.

 

I have several other Indian markets close too, where I constantly find produce that I am completely ignorant of, but would love to learn about. So if that is a good place to hunt decent mangosteens, please kindly share your knowledge.

 

Asia is a huge continent (the hugest) and people don't mean any harm or insult by referring to it without more specificity. Most folks realize it also includes Siberia, and I don't think anyone is looking for mangosteens from there. :)

 

No, I have not seen mangosteens in places like Patel Brothers and don't expect to. I would be surprised If I came upon them in one. I might see some one day (not that I remember doing so yet) in a Southern Indian grocery, though (in the USA); and would have (IIRC) back in SE Asia – but that would be more a function of the ready local availability of the fruit when in season. 

 

Yes, "Gujarati" refers to folks from Gujarat and their language. "Patel" is a prominent family name of Gujarat, with a large entrepreneur diaspora throughout the Western world. Of course, "Indian" shops would carry a mixture of stuff from all over the Indian subcontinent nowadays, but in places like Patel Bros. one might expect to find more northern-Indian type stuff, things from Andhra, Maharashtra, Gujarat(of course) and other northern states more than strictly Tamilian or Keralan stuff, for example, but that is only an expectation and not necessarily true in practice everywhere.

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