Following are some of the fruits you will be encountering as you make your way to Vietnam; some are probably found in the China town nearby to your residence.
Dragon fruit, which may weigh up to 0.5kg with pink or dark red cover, has recently been cultivated in Vietnam. Its cover can be peeled off easily when the fruit is ripe, revealing the white gelatinous meat. The pulp contains countless tiny black seeds that cannot be extracted, giving the sweet and sour taste. Dragon fruit’s harvest season is in October, November, April and May.
Special as its name (“Vu sua” means “milk from the breast” in Vietnamese), star apple is one of the fruits that have the most marvelous taste: its juice is fragrantly sweet and milky white like breast milk. The way people enjoy this fruit is also very strange. After cutting the fruit into two equal parts, we will use a spoon to scoop out the pulp, bit after bit, until nothing is left. Star apple is grown most in Can Tho, where tourists can visit star apple orchard and try the fruit there.
Although papaya is sold widely at a very low price all over Vietnam, this sweet smelling fruit in fact contains various minerals and vitamin A and C that are very good for your health. There are a few kinds of papaya: one with red meat and with yellow or orange meat, depending on the growing land. Vietnamese also use unripe papaya in some cuisines such as salad or soup.
Being imported to Vietnam from Central America a long time ago, sapodilla has become quite popular nowadays in the recent 20 years. This fruit is grown mostly in northern Vietnam, with the shape of an egg and brownish skin. When ripe, the brown and yellow pulp is very juicy and has a molasses-like taste. Sapodilla offers fruit every month of the year, and the place that has the best one is Xuan Dinh, Tu Liem District, Hanoi.
Jackfruit is a popular fruit of Vietnam. Jack fruit can be found anywhere from Northern to Southern Vietnam, both in the city and country side. Jackfruit is among the easiest to grow plants and its taste will vary according to the soil and climate condition it lives under.
The size of a jack fruit is relatively large compared to other fruits. Its skin is covered in thorns like durians but the flesh is divided into smaller yellow pouches. The seeds inside each pouch can be roasted or boiled and make a delicious snack while the flesh of jackfruit is the main edible part.
Nowadays, jackfruit flesh parts are also dry roasted and packaged into a popular snacks. If you cannot enjoy them fresh, take a package home!
Among all the fruits, coconut is probably the most popular and has the most uses. In Southern Vietnam, coconut can be found in Ben Tre, a province which has been famous for this kind of fruits for many years.
Coconut juice is a popular drinks in the hot summer, its flesh can be enjoyed raw, with sweet chè, or in stewed recipes; and its oil is aromatic enough for spa treatment.
The coconut juice, besides being served as a refreshment, can be used in many Vietnamese dishes, especially to give the broth or sauted sauce a natural sweet flavour. Desserts made from either coconut juice or flesh are always popular as well.
Coconut can be easily found in the market or on the streets, especially in summer time. Imagine having a sip of the fresh coconut juice and relax yourself on one of the best beaches in the world: welcome to Vietnam!
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