China deserves an entire feature on the unique edible flora found in these realms. Fruit that comes straight from science-fiction, veggies that look completely contrived and flowers that, while ornamental back home, prove unexpected sources of nutrition here. I’ll use this page from time to time to feature some of the unique produce found here.
First feature: the incredible Dragon Fruit. I saw these last year when Sam and I were on a business trip to Cambodia, and couldn’t believe my eyes. They look kind of like something that might grow on another planet, if said planet could actually sustain life. But they are indeed real. And they are sold at all the produce markets here in Tianjin.
Dragon Fruit, also known as “Pitaya,” is the fruit of various cacti species, and grown largely in Southeast Asia, which is interesting to me since I grew up in Indonesia and Malaysia, but do not recall ever seeing these. In any case, they are gorgeous.
When Dragon Fruit is ripe, it has vibrant fuchsia coloring, as seen here, interspersed with curious, tiny black seeds. Like poppy seeds, really. When Dragon Fruit is younger, the inner flesh is more of a white to pale pink, so that the black seeds become prominent.
Young or mature, it always amazing to look at. The texture is quite fleshy, soft but not mushy, rather like a ripe cantaloupe. The flavor is hard to explain. Rather bland in my opinion and somewhat sweet, but not dominantly so. It is the appearance that truly captivates!