We have been trying to make the most of the fruit in season before heading home next week, knowing that the variety will be nowhere near as good nor will the prices be anywhere near as competitive! Funnily enough, even though the prices here are generally cheaper than we would pay in Australia, the following photos were taken at supermarkets and therefore are significantly more expensive than they would be if bought from a local market. However, prices at markets are not set nor do they have label signs, both of which were what I needed to include in my photos for students!
The fruit we have most enjoyed are the mangoes which are easily of one of my favourite fruits. At first the only mango available was the golek:
The golek mango is easily identifiable because of its long curved shape and when no other variety is available, it is has a nice flavour. However as soon as the harum manis (sweet and fragrant) mango season began, the poor golek mango was totally ignored!
Within weeks of the harum manis mango season starting, suddenly other varieties have become available. Look at the amazing variety of mangoes:
Other fruit available here that we are enjoying include the dragon fruit – buah naga.
Lengkeng are a really unusual fruit which taste like a combination of a lychee and a cumquat. They are firstly sweet and then suddenly sour.
Another of my favourite fruits here in Indonesia are manggis.
Manggis have a thick purple skin which is easily opened by squeezing the fruit between your palms. The white fruit segments inside are so sweet and it is fun to count the lacy pattern on the bottom before opening as this matches the number of segments! Manggis are not in season at the moment hence the horrendous price of them here! This morning we thought we were getting a bargain so put a few in a bag and then almost fainted after they were weighed, to discover that total price was nearly Rp50,000! Upon looking more carefully at the price, we realised why!
Salak are another unusual fruit found in Indonesia and are found all year round. They grow on a palm tree and fruit just like the fruit of the palm that is harvested for palm oil. The fruit grow in clusters at the junction of the frond and the trunk.
Another tropical fruit I have developed a taste for this year is the passionfruit. I am not usually a huge fan of passionfruit, unless it is used to garnish a pavlova, but this variety is absolutely delicious.
Don’t be fooled by the spotted skin, the fruit is sweet and juicy and unlike the purple variety which is always less than half full of seeds, this one is consistently full of seeds. I love to open them like a manggis and then tear open the white pith before devouring the contents! So delicious.
Of course, a post about tropical fruit wouldn’t be complete without a photo of a durian.
I don’t think I would ever be brave enough to buy a durian from a supermarket. I have been totally spoiled by Bu Arfa in Kalimantan & Bu Nani in Sumatra with Durian bought in season from the local pasar or from sellers by the side of the road. Goodness only knows how long ago the durian in supermarkets were picked!!
Sirsak are another of the fruits I have enjoyed throughout Indonesia although it has only been in Bali that I have enjoyed sirsak juice!
They are squishy like a mango when ripe and grow on trees just jackfruit, meaning the fruit sometimes grows along branches or straight from the tree trunk! Very unusual sight! The skin is easily peeled and the creamy white flesh is just like a custard apple. An incredibly messy fruit to eat but delicious.
Here are some photos of fruits also available in Australia. See if you can recognise them:
Just like in Australia, imported fruit is very expensive. Here are a selection of fruits available at supermarkets but rarely found in local markets!
While these are imported from the USA, strawberries are grown throughout Indonesia in mountainous areas. Not being a fan of strawberries, I can’t tell you whether there is any difference in the flavour between Indonesian strawberries and Australian strawberries. I will always choose passionfruit on my pavlova over strawberries!!
To finish up, I want to share with you some photos of other foods available in the fruit section:
‘terong balanda’ literally translates as Dutch eggplant!! We know them as tamarillo!!
and finally ‘lidah buaya’ which translates as crocodile tongue!! Do you recognise this enormous leaf? It is an aloe vera leaf!
Of course now that I am almost finished writing this post, I realise I have left out a fruits I should have included! No idea why I don’t have a photo of a star fruit!! I will have to add that later!!