Indonesian Fruit Installment 10: Duku, Langsat
If you thought I was done with the lychee-like fruit family, you were wrong. It is duku season here now. Known in English as langsat or lanzones, these small snack-size fruits taste a lot like grapefruit. And in Indonesia, South Sumatra calls the duku flower it’s provincial bloom. When you see duku in grocery stores and on certain street carts they are often labeled duku Palembang. Palembang is the capital city of South Sumatra and a lot of duku must come from there.
Some duku are shaped a bit like miniature figs and it is easy to crack them open at the top. Otherwise, I usually peel off the shell as best as I can. After peeling a few, I usually find that my hands are sticky, the type of sticky that comes from touching a pine cone and getting sap on your hands.
Like lychee, rambutan, and klengkeng, duku is clear on the inside. The fruit has natural slivers, some of which contain seeds that you shouldn’t bite into because they are very bitter. The gelatin like consistency of the fruit and the grapefruit sour taste make this fruit seem more like some kind of jelly candy. It’s a bit unreal, in the best way possible.
I really like duku and am enjoying the fact that they are so cheap and in season. I think they would be an interesting and unique addition to any kind of citrus salad.
This is my 10th fruit installment and I keep finding new fruits, so I think I’ll get to 20. Stay tuned all you lovers of fruit.