Fruit – Rambutan

Rambutan means “hairy” (why be creative with a fruit name when you can just be descriptive, right?).  This fruit is a relative of the lychee, and shares quite a few of the same characteristics.  The spines on the skin are actually quite soft, not pokey.  Keep an eye out in any sci-fi TV show or movie that has “alien fruits” and you’re likely to spot these funny looking things (and also dragon fruits).  The outside is peeled away (or cut, it can be a little thick to peel by hand sometimes) and discarded, and in the center of the white edible flesh is a single large seed (also not eaten, though some times you end up eating a little of it anyway, since it can be really hard to separate the outside of the pit from the flesh).  The flesh is like a lychee or grape – slightly springy, soft and wet.  It has a sweet and floral flavor (it really tastes almost like a lychee, so if you know what those taste like, you know about what a rambutan tastes like).

There’s a wikipedia article on rambutan here: