In this post, I will show you two very popular fruits of Thailand: Durian and mangosteen. Whereas durian is said to be the king of all fruits, mangosteen (Thai: mangkhut) is called the queen of fruits. They are preferably eaten together, as they have a complementary effects on your body. As the durian makes your body hot (Thai: rohn), the mangosteen cools it down again.
Durian – the king of Thai fruits tastes a little bit like chocolate mousse and it’s very rich in calories. The odor of that fruit will disgust you at first, but as soon as you conquered yourself and tried that fruit you will love it forever. But be careful, locals say that eating durian and drinking alcohol together will make your body to overheat, up to a heat stroke or heart failure. From my own experience I can’t confirm that, nevertheless, I warned you. Apart from its heat producing characteristics, the durian provides a lot of health benefits too. The king of fruits in rich in Vitamin C and contains some rare vitamin B-complexes. The durian tree can grow up to 50 meter, but already bears fruit after 4-5 years. There are a variety of different durian types. The most famous one, of which Thailand exports over 600 000 tones a year, is called the mon thong or “golden pillow”. Durians are available all year round but the prices vary according to the durian seasons. The rainy months from June to August are high season and you can get them everywhere and at a relative low price. On the contrary durian are scarce during the winter months and prices will go drastically up during that period.
Another very delicious fruit is the mangosteen or how Thai people call it mangkhut. This fruit tastes very sweet, is much less fat than a durian and, as I said above, cools your body down. As the durian, the mangkhut is native to Southeast Asia and is used, as almost all foods here, in folk medicine. The fruit is believed to have an anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effect on the body. It helps to treat skin infections and calms the nervous system down. The health benefits of its organic compounds, the xanthones, were discovered by scientist too. If you peel the mangosteen, remember that the healthy xanthones are part of the very bitter pericarp and not of the sweet pulp. So if you peel it, don’t peel it too good, what isn’t very difficult as you will see.