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Thursday, December 6, 2012

The Orange Tomato

Brazil has a lot of fruits that we don't. During the time I lived there, I fell in love with the variety of exotic fruits, some of which I've never seen in the US, even though I know in some place they must be available. Passion fruit? Oh, if I could only get my hands on some fresh ones!

One time I thought I found seriguela in the grocery store, a fruit that looks like a tiny orange and has a nice big pit in the center. I bought several, eagerly taking them home to try. To my dismay, they were just kumquats! As of yet I haven't found a useful purpose for this fruit that is mostly peel and seed.



A similar thing happened to me a few weeks ago. I spotted what looked like the wonderful caqui, a fruit that looks like an orange tomato, but soft, juicy, and oh-so-sweet. I eyed it warily in the grocery store, unable to find any label for what it was. Finally my curiosity won me over, and I bought several. In the check out line, they rang up as persimmons, and my heart sank. Once again, I'd mistaken an American fruit for a Brazilian one.

When I got home, I bit into one. To my surprise, it tasted just like a caqui! Quickly I pulled out my dictionary and looked up persimmon. It is a caqui! They're the same fruit!

I can't believe I grew up in the south and never saw/tasted a persimmon until I went to Brazil. But let me tell you, I am so thrilled to have found them here!

Now if only I could find acerola, pinha, and jabuticaba! we'd be great. Though I can do without pitomba and caju.

6 comments:

Elisa said...

there's no ethnic grocery stores carrying these fruits? What a shame. I can find any of my favorite fruits from Korea at the Korean market, though not as large/cheap/ripe.

Elisa said...

In Korea persimmon are called kam. They were one of my favorites there too. I never tried them til Korea, so I guess we both had an ignorant Southern upbringing. :)

Meg said...

I grew up eating fuji persimmons in Ca. I think I'm allergic to them, though, because they always make my mouth itchy and break out in canker sores! They're yummy, though!

Aaron and Emily said...

whoa - did you just read my latest blog? i wrote about persimmions AND passion fruit! Seriously, is that why you wrote this post or are we just karma twins?!

Aaron and Emily said...

Also - I grew up with a persimmon tree - they produce in the fall. That year you came for Thanksgiving, I wonder if the crop was over...

Tamara Heiner said...

If only there were an ethnic store! It's not impossible to get some of those fruits but pretty hard and pretty expensive! How sad to have an allergy, Meg! I would hate that!

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