I had always heard mixed reactions to the consumption of the notorious king of stinky fruit, the durian. Locals in South East Asia say it may smell like hell, but it tastes like heaven. Westerners, on the other hand, find it unpalatable.
The durian is definitely one of the stranger fruits I have ever eaten. It’s as big as a basketball, and sometimes even bigger, and is covered in ferocious spikes, making it a dangerous past time to walk among the trees that bear it. You surely don’t want one of those falling on your head. Durian is also one of the smelliest foods on the planet. It’s right up there with Limburger cheese and Stinky Tofu (more on those later). Its smell is so overpowering it’s oftentimes not allowed to bring into public buildings such as hotels. This is truly a forbidden fruit.
I had come across durians before during my travels across Asia. I can see them in my local supermarket in China throughout the year, but it wasn’t until my second visit to Bali, Indonesia in 2016 that I decided to give it ago. Maybe the locals were right after all.
It turns out that even after five years of living in China, my palate had not yet fully adapted to Asian standards. Durian is one of the most horrifying things I’ve ever had the “pleasure” of trying. It’s hard to describe the sensation, but I’ve finally narrowed it down to a mixture of blue cheese and raw onions.
Although I’m not keen on trying again, durian will feature heavily in tis blog in the shape of chocolate, cookies, ice-creams and shakes. The thought of it alone gives me precognitive gags, but who knows I might be surprised.
Fear Factor – 5 / Taste Test – 0