Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

Lychee Love


Recommended Posts

According to the fount of all misinformation, Wikipedia, the lychee entry states that "the outside of the fruit is pink-red". Ignorant fools!

 

A few weeks ago, a friend sent me a jar of lychee honey from the family plot. Yesterday, I  went to visit her and was taken to see the lychees. This involved quite a trek uphill!

 

Anyway, we got there. The lychees (荔枝 lì zhī) are being harvested as quickly as they can be, in order to get them to market in perfect condition before the season ends soon.

The first thing I noticed was the surprising range of colours in the fruit. I immediately  assumed that they were at different stages or degrees of ripeness. The "stupid foreigner", aka me, was soon put straight.

"No! They are all ripe. That is why we are hurrryng to harvest them!" I didn't hear the "idiot!" at the end of the sentence, but it was all there in the tone!*

 

It appears that lychees are pink/red when they are pink/red, but not pink/red when they are not pink/red. In fact they come in different colours.

542269307__20210619211635.thumb.jpg.4cc2483da328672c24a4500090ceff92.jpg

 

Some were politely growing to Wiki specfications;

 

1082818130__20210619211811.thumb.jpg.b494f48d5df54f7b407d26af029d2488.jpg

 

1984601525__20210619211822.thumb.jpg.32ac2fdf0c2cf37a37d00f619499eab6.jpg

 

1899422694__20210619211837.thumb.jpg.37b609578f21d9330c0db468f3e048d4.jpg

 

others were doing as they damn-well pleased and they were pleased to be yellow (some with a scattering of red freckles to increase their allure)

 

831125194__20210619211643.thumb.jpg.34e32aa28aa4f6090cc7ba99f99c8a37.jpg

 

876657280__20210619211652.thumb.jpg.ec173bf6f302e3f672516c1438e3ead9.jpg

 

603059211__20210619211658.thumb.jpg.30bd3d064854d87c653b30c51b373dfe.jpg

 

252531234__20210619211728.thumb.jpg.36037f80d5f9b02fd8d3dcbf9f3a1d4c.jpg

 

1470374301__20210619211743.thumb.jpg.25d185031e259c1b6f34057431052b8e.jpg

 

These yellow babies are not only yellow, but are larger than the red ones (the last two pictures show my friend's average sized lady-hand for scale. They are also noticeably more sweet and juicy.

The yellow ones are known as 情人荔 (qíng rén lì) meaning 'lover lychee' as the fruits are heart-shaped.

Finally, I saw these. 青荔 (qīng lì) meaning 'green lychee'.

 

1601835619__20210619211704.thumb.jpg.db897a409f065444cab0320e8c62b2be.jpg

 

703319418__20210619211712.thumb.jpg.e69c70a0ad393929c1e8758ec3a1c6db.jpg

 

1993727283__20210619211719.thumb.jpg.75e1e5fe1a87a4d4f65a5a6919da1791.jpg

 

These, I was told, are a new cultivar and still very rare (and expensive). The family has only been harvesting these for two years. They are ripe. I know. I ate the one in the centre of that last image!

 

* Actually, everyone was very polite, welcoming and happy to explain anything I asked about.

 

 

Edited by liuzhou (log)
  • Like 5

...your dancing child with his Chinese suit.

 

The Kitchen Scale Manifesto

Link to comment
Share on other sites

,OK - slightly suggestive caption and image, but the trees and their bounty are stunning. Only seen them in the market. I've mentioned here before that we enjoy them on hot days in a bowl of ice water. The squirt of the juices is a lovely respite from heat. I only see the dark ones here. It is a subtle floral taste that some I have introduced it to do not appreciate. No "wow".  My son and I were on a ferry once in Vancouver and nearby passengers were interested in our sighs of pleasure so we fostered some new aficionados.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, heidih said:

OK - slightly suggestive caption and image

 

I have no idea what you find suggestive about the caption or what you imagine it is I was suggesting. I named the topic so because of the name of the yellow lychees in Chinese.

 

And I have no idea what image you are talking about, either. There are 12 images in my post - none of which are suggestive in any way.

Edited by liuzhou (log)

...your dancing child with his Chinese suit.

 

The Kitchen Scale Manifesto

Link to comment
Share on other sites

11 hours ago, liuzhou said:

This involved quite a trek uphill!

But it looks like the effort was worth it!  What a great opportunity. I love the ones we the can get here and often wonder how much I am missing. Most fruits picked and eaten at their peak of ripeness are revelatory. Thanks for sharing this experience. 

  • Thanks 1

Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

Link to comment
Share on other sites

@liuzhou This is a bit off topic, but can you tell me how lychee is properly pronounced? I've always thought it was lee-chee, but I've heard many others call it 'ligh-chee'.

Edited by KennethT (log)
Link to comment
Share on other sites

38 minutes ago, KennethT said:

@liuzhou This is a bit off topic, but can you tell me how lychee is properly pronounced? I've always thought it was lee-chee, but I've heard many others call it 'ligh-chee'.

 

 I don't think how to pronounce a food is off-topic.

From my understanding, lee-chee is more American and ligh-chee more British, although I'm sure there are exceptions.

The Mandarin is  closer to lee-dji. But the Cantonese is closer to ligh-zi. So we are no furher forward! Call them what feels most comfortable to you!

 

  • Thanks 1

...your dancing child with his Chinese suit.

 

The Kitchen Scale Manifesto

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 Share

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...