Saturday, July 23, 2016

A way of eating durian that many people seem unfamiliar with

Behold these ingredients for a delicious meal!

Now this is what I consider to be a yummy combination :b

On my recent visit to my home state of Penang, I got to talking to a fellow durian lover who's a medical doctor.  In addition to completely understanding my need to fly back to feast on the "king of fruits", he got to extolling this delicious food item's high nutrition value.  

Although he didn't specifically say so, I got the feeling that he's one of those durian purists whose preferred way to eat durian is the plain way: i.e., fresh and on its own.  Alternatively, I've long enjoyed durian ice cream (for yes, durian is a fairly common ice cream flavor in Malaysia -- more easily found, actually, than, say, pistachio or even mango!).  Also, I've been pretty happy with the durian pancakes and durian mochi that I've come across in Hong Kong dessert shops .  

In addition, I've been known to make durian the centrepiece of an actual meal -- rather than just snack or dessert course -- by eating this meaty as well as creamy fruit with rice bathed with santan (coconut milk) and sprinkled with gula melaka.  As you can imagine, it's actually a pretty rich tasting meal -- and one that's pretty much guaranteed to leave me feeling full as well as very satisfied!

Although I've long thought that this was a traditional Malaysian way of eating durian, I've since come across a number of fellow Malaysians who weren't familiar with it.  So maybe it's more a Nyonya Baba way of eating durian than anything.  Also, my mother -- whose mother, like my paternal grandmother, dressed in Nyonya kebaya rather than, say, cheongsam -- associates this dish with my father's side of the family; with her side of the family tending to prefer to eat their durian with salt -- rather than black sugar -- along with santan and rice!

Furthermore, while there are times when I want to just dig into this durian rice dish with my hand, I've also been known to opt to use a fork and spoon -- not because I want to be dainty but, actually, so as to not have the strong smell of the fruit linger on my hands the way it would if I were to handle the flesh of the durian!  And yes, I realize that this is a far from usual, never mind traditional, way of eating durian.  Still, I think my mother's way of eating durian will seem even more unlikely to most people since she actually uses chopsticks when eating this fruit whose aroma really can linger on anything its flesh comes into contact with much more than one would like! ;S


Anonymous said...

Hi there,

I remember Tung Po in North Point serves deep fried Durian. A bit wierd too, but seemed it is among their popular dishes. I don't remember if it's being served as dessert or something else. Yes, that's the same one Bourdain frequented.

I have to admit I do not favour Durian.


YTSL said...

Hi T --

I'm not averse to the idea of deep fried durian but there are other dishes I'd rather order at Tung Po (e.g., their razor clams in black bean sauce, deep fried pig'a trotters, and wind sand chicken).

Re your not favoring durian: maybe it's because you haven't had fresh Penang durian? ;b

Anonymous said...

Hi there,

I don't like the aroma of Durian in a closed room like you mentioned in Supermarkets. Maybe when I grew up nobody around me likes them. Thus I never tasted them. On the other hand I might have been put off by some ex-colleagues sometime over 25 years ago. Some one brought a few Durian fruits back into the office and eat them during office hours. It smelled like a coolant leak of the Air-conditioning system for half a day....... :-P


Anonymous said...

Hi there,

Concerning dishes at Tung Po, I liked their spaghetti in squid ink sauce. Once a friend joked if one goes to Tung Po, they could order food by way of a ruler. Just walk towards the wall with the plates showing the dishes, select one and call out how far you would like to go toward which direction.......


sarah bailey knight said...

HI ytsl,

The durian dish looks tasty. Also interesting to me are your links to the traditional clothing. So beautiful!

Liisa said...

Well, if I ever want to taste durian I'll know where to find expert advice ;o)

YTSL said...

Hi again T --

I think durian (like, say, sake) is one of the things that one has to be introduced to in the right way and circumstances. Otherwise, you'd be unable to really appreciate it. Put another way: it does seem to be an acquired taste -- but there are many who do come to love it. :)

Re Tung Po: actually, the squid ink spaghetti isn't one of my favorites. It looks cool but I find it not all that tasty!

Hi sarah sbk --

I'm glad you checked out the links in this blog entry as well as the post itself! :)

Hi Liisa --

I'm no durian expert really -- but, well, I am Malaysian... ;)

peppylady (Dora) said...

I do like to use Coconut in a lot of things. I should expand my eating and try something new.
Coffee is on

YTSL said...

Hi peppylady --

You may have used coconut in a lot more things than I have! For example, I actually don't like cocktails with coconut milk in it! On the other hand, I like curries with coconut milk in them... and just pouring coconut milk over rice and eating it with durian or mangoes is something I definitely do like. :)