Great food from the Philippines: Durian (yes the stinky fruit)

by Dave from The Longest Way Home ~ September 28th, 2009. Updated on August 30th, 2012. Published in: Travel blog » Food around the world » Filipino food.
A slice of stinky Durian fruit from the Philippines

A slice of stinky Durian fruit from the Philippines

Durian from The Philippines

More famous due it’s stong odour than its taste the Durian fruit is a controversial fruit in the Philippines. It’s banned on public transport due to the powerful sinus sapping odor that perminates even its thick sharp spiky war like outer skin. Some Filipinos are said to be addicted to its taste, others repulsed as the average tourist by the smell.

Any time I entered a wet market in the Philippines it was the Durian from a nearby fruit market I could smell over any meat. Next to Balut it was the second most common question I would be asked about food in the Philippines. “Have you tried Durian?”

I refused for a long time. Settling instead for the candy versions, which to me was not so nice. Then by accident I bought a local ice cream and thought something was wrong with it. Was it the product of an intestinal joke? or … Yes, it was Durian flavour. So with those two experiences in mind, I went for the actual fruit.

Large seeds surrounded by white flesh: I liken the taste to a custardy egg with a nutty overtone mixed with the nasal enhancement of being eaten in a musty bathroom with an ill flushing toilet.

Some say the Durian is not a native of the Philippines, but try telling that to Durian capital of the Philippines Davao. Coming in various sizes from 1kg to several kg it’s not a cheap fruit. Small trays of pre packed and peeled Durian can cost 120 peso upwards. While whole fruits many 100′s.

This is an additional post and one of a series highlighting Filipino food

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8 Great responses to Great food from the Philippines: Durian (yes the stinky fruit)

  1. jessiev says:

    TOO funny., i’ve had the durian candy and spit it right back out. you were brave to try the real thing!

  2. Hope you are doing fine. Just saw the news on TV and thought would inquire about your well being. Take care…

  3. AudMraz says:

    Just had some durian yesterday and just now ;) am not crazy about it either but I have a bite like once or twice a year, depending on the fruit season.

    • -jessiev- Glad you enjoyed. Real thing is better than the candy! Just about.

      -Shivanand- Good to hear from you! Yes all is fine for me. Not so for others, but then it happens every year. Or these days twice a year. Thanks for checking in on me!

      -AudMraz- Lucky you! At least you give it try a few times a year. Watch out or you may get addicted ;)

  4. Nora says:

    I couldn’t quite wrap my head around durian when I was in the tropics. I tried it – more than once, and I’m a pretty adventurous eater. But it just didn’t do anything for me! Apparently part of the appeal is in the slight psychotropic effects it holds. Again – didn’t do anything for me! (smiles)

  5. ruben says:

    My wife and I love this fruit, smell notwithstanding (they call it aromatic). Its flesh is creamy and no fruit comes close in terms of texture, consistency and taste. People either hate or love this fruit but you have to taste it first to love it.

    We have 7 durian-bearing tress in our farm in San Pablo city in Laguna, mostly of the Chanee, Arancillo and Monthong varieties. My personal favorite is the Puyat (no fruit yet) and am still waiting for the D101 durian to bear fruit.

    Durian in southern Philippines flowers in March-April and the fruit is harvested in July to August.

  6. Audrey says:

    Yum! Yum! I miss it! Being Malaysian born I grew up eating it and loving it. I can get frozen ones now but just not the same as going to a durian stall and picking what you want off the menu and having the vendor bring it to your table and opening it for you. A young coconut chaser is just the thing to go with it.
    The Malays eat it fermented (Tempoyak) with rice and sambal.
    How lucky Ruben is to have a whole farm!!!