Imagine a burning sun with palm trees swaying in the breeze as the sea glitters on the horizon. It’s time to discover the world of exotic fruits! But what exactly is an exotic fruit, and why does it always conjure up these idyllic images?
Exotic or tropical?
Did you know that the word “exotic” means “originating in or characteristic of a distant, foreign country”? The term therefore refers to imported fruits that do not grow on our soil. But everything is relative. Papaya is an exotic fruit for Europeans, but not for Brazilians as it grows in Brazil! The word generally used by all countries is therefore “tropical,” which means, of course, grown in the Tropics.
This makes sense, as tropical fruits only thrive in a specific climate. They require average temperatures of 80°F (27°C), and above all very little variation between the hottest and coldest months of the year. The leading exporters of these fruits are in South America and the Caribbean. Certain countries in Asia and Africa are also leading producers. Many tropical fruits were introduced into Europe by leading explorers returning from their expeditions around the world.
Flavors and benefits
We love exotic fruits, and it’s just as well because they are brimming with benefits! Firstly, they have the advantage of being low in calories. Secondly, they are filled with countless vitamins, minerals, fiber, and antioxidants. And lastly, they put a smile on our face with their bright colors and sweet flavors, and can be used in savory dishes, desserts, or just eaten whole! Do you know which exotic fruits are the most consumed in France? Pineapples, bananas, and avocados! Did you guess right?
Of course, there are also pomegranates, litchis, dragon fruit, and more. The list goes on and on, but for now we have decided to showcase mango and passion fruit, both of which are used in the very latest white tea from Kusmi – Tropical White. A great chance to learn more about these two tropical fruits!
Mango and passion fruit
Mango is the fleshy fruit of the mango tree, also known as mangifera indica, a plant from South Asia and particularly present in India. Its orange, fragrant, juicy flesh is both creamy and sweet. There are hundreds of varieties of mangos, all high in vitamins and minerals. Quick tip: Mangos are even better when ripe. You should look for ones with smooth skin whose color is closer to red than to green.
Passion fruit grows on the passiflora edulis, a climbing plant found in South America and more specifically in Brazil. Unlike mangos, the best passion fruits are those with wrinkly skin! This exotic fruit is also known as granadilla or maracuja. Its unique flavor is found in the pulp surrounding its seeds, and the nutrients it contains are quite simply exceptional!
So, what is your favorite exotic fruit?