Names: pithaya · strawberry pear
Origin: Cambodia • China • the Philippines • Thailand • Sri Lanka • Vietnam
Plant: Hylocereus undatus
Legend: During battle many years ago, fire wasn’t the only thing that came from a dragon’s mouth. At the end of each fiery blow, a dragon fruit would fall from the dragon’s tongue and onto the ground. Once the dragon was slain, soldiers collected the fruit and presented it to the Emperor as a symbol of victory.
In Season: summer to early fall
Nutrition: fiber • iron • vitamin C & B
Benefits: antioxidant properties • replenishes blood • strengthens immune system • helps with digestion and constipation
Store: Asian markets, or your grocery store’s produce section near other exotic fruit.
Selection: Fruit with leathery, bright, even-colored skin, flexible stems, and green scales. Avoid fruits with bruises, blotchy coloring, and dry, browned scales. To check for ripeness, squeeze the fruit like an avocado or pear. If it’s too firm, then it will need a few days to ripen. If it’s too soft, then it’s past its prime. Try to find a middle ground with flesh that yields when squeezed.
Preparation: Cut the fruit in half lengthwise. Then scoop out the flesh by running a spoon along the edges of the skin (like an avocado). If the fruit is ripe, it should easily separate from the skin. Finally, cut into desired shapes.
Storage: Keep the fruit on your kitchen counter until the pink skin darkens (a sign of ripeness). If you’re not ready to use it, move it into your fridge for up to 3 days (dragon fruit is tastier cold). If cut open, wrap halves in plastic wrap and place cut pieces in an airtight container.
Taste & Texture: just barely sweet • spongy like a watermelon • crunchy seeds like a kiwi
Suggested Uses: toss in fruit salad • add to smoothies, oatmeal, or yogurt • use in homemade jams or jello • purée and add to drinks
Dragon Fruit Soda (via Kitchen Konfidence)
Dragon Fruit Smoothie (via Grateful Grazer)
Dragon Fruit Sorbet (via The Spruce Eats)
Mando & Dragon Fruit Tart (via Ricardo Cuisine)
~*~ MORE ~*~
DIY Dragon Fruit Face Mask and Hair Conditioner (via HudaBeauty.com)
What do you know about Dragon Fruit? Let me know and leave a comment below.