Wednesday, 30 October 2013

Wild Durians From East Malaysia - Sabah & Sarawak‏

Red and Orange Durians of Sabah
Durio graveolens is a typical size for durian trees, about 50 meters tall

Durian Sukang (Red-flesh Durian), Species: Durio graveolens. When ripe, the husk of Durian Sukang turns yellow, with short and sharp spines

Durian Dalit (Orange-flesh Durian), Species: Durio oxleyanus. The husk of Durian Dalit is green color, with long and thick thorns outside

A local daily reported that the small durians, about the size of a sepak takraw ball, are sold for RM2 to RM3 when they are in season

That lipstick red durian flesh is the image that most people associate with Durio graveolens. It's small and the exterior is a bright yellow sometimes tinged brown. It has a mild odor, and a thick cheesy flesh with barely any flavor. Many people compare it to eating avocado

But there's another side to Durio graveolens. An addicting smooth, nutty, cheesy side that's so thick it's hard to swallow.  So savory,sweet and fatty that it led to Rob and me to argue over whether it could fairly be compared to pimento cheese (vegans and our memories!). This version of Durio graveolens is neon orange or bright yellow packaged in a spiky green or yellow exterior. It can be as large as a small Durio zibethinus

So what's the deal?

Red and orange durian fruits are very small and can be held by one palm. Both are considered as Wild Durians

Red-fleshed durian opening on the tree

It's possible that Durio graveolens is actually two species lumped under one name.  It seems even more probable given the difference in the way the two fruits mature. Like most durians, the orange-fleshed durian falls to the forest floor when ripe. The red-fleshed one doesn't. The durian remains attached to the tree as the fruit opens and drops the flesh and seeds onto the ground. Botanist Anthony Lamb has suggested that the orange-fleshed one, known locally as Dalit, is a different species

When compared to a common durian seed, the seeds of both wild durians look so small

The commercially-planted durian fruit has thick layer of yellow flesh. In contrast, though creamy as well, the flesh of red and orange durians is thin, and the taste is slightly bland. However, their scent is strong and distinctive, like fermented wine. The taste and flavor of red durian is twice as strong as orange durian. That’s why red durian is sold more (and fast) than the cheaper orange durian. Some says you would get a bit “drunken” if you eat too many red durian.

Orange flesh durian for sale in market in Kuala Penyu town. A bundle of 6 or 7 was sold for RM17. Red and Orange flesh durians are not being cultivated on a large scale, so you won’t see them often in city market. You have to look for them in  local market of rural or suburban areas of Sabah.


What makes Sabah people so happy in year end? Xmas? New Year?
Durian Sukang (Red Durian) and Durian Dalit (Orange Durian)

Durian Sukang (Red-flesh Durian), Species: Durio graveolens When ripe, the husk of Durian Sukang turns yellow, with short and sharp spines

Red and orange durian fruits are very small and can be held by one palm. Both are considered as Wild Durians

Durian flesh in red, orange and yellow colors. Which one you like huh?

Orange flesh durian for sale in market in Kuala Penyu town. A bundle of 6 or 7 was sold for RM17 (≈USD5.70)

The harvest this year is very good, so durian lovers are excited about the cheap durians

A bundle of 4 was sold for RM20 (≈USD6.70)

The red durian was sold out in Kuala Penyu last week. Luckily we found a roadside stall selling red durian around Membakut

Don’t be sad if you can’t find wild durian. There are many other cultivated durians for sale at roadside
Oh ya, a King was born on Christmas

Guess what ..... The “King of Fruits” is born too, as it’s fruiting season now in Sabah, and durian is everywhere! Besides the ordinary durians, someone is more interested in two special breeds of Sabah durians, theDurian Sukang (Red Durian) and Durian Dalit (Orange Durian) of Borneo.

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Wild Durians from Sarawak Rainforest
Durian ukak/ Durian pantan/Durian nyekak/buah pakan

Durian isu with long spikes

Durian isu

Durian Ukak and Durian Isu

Durian ukak with whiskers at the base of its peduncle

Tropical forest fruits found in Sarawak like durians,dabai (jungle olives) and wild mangoes were so abundant that price for durian went down to RM 1 per durian and RM 8 per kg of dabai.There are a lot of information about cultivated durians but little is known about wild durians from the rainforest of Borneo.They are truly food of the nature which grow wild in the tropical forests of Sarawak.

Basically there are 5 varieties of jungle durians in Sarawak,namely durian ukak(durio kutejensis),durian isu(durio oxleyanus),durian isi merah(durio graveolens),durian kura-kura(durio testudinaran) and durian kulit merah(durio dulcis).

The more common ones are durian isu and durian ukak/Buah pakan.The other three are quite rare nowadays.Shown in the picture above is Durian Ukak aka Durian Nyekek aka Buah Pakan.Look at its fruitlet.How vivid is the orange color of the flesh! It is firm like custard,almost free of durian worms all the time.Taste sweet and almost odorless.Durian ukak is said to be less ‘heaty’ than the regular durians which means it won’t cause much congestion of any kind in the body system.Its creamy  and  odorless aril is unique to taste.  Another type of jungle durian is durian isu aka durian isau .Durian Isu is a tiny and round shape durian,full of long thorns of length up to 2 cm.

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Durianon - Wild Durians
Known as Dulcis or Lahong, Not Rambutan. Wild durian with yellow meat

Wild Durio Oxleynus Green Outer Skin

Wild Durio Dulcis Red Outer Skin

Wild Durio Oxleynus (Sukan) Green Outer Skin (Yellow meat)

Wild Durio Acutifolius Red Outer Skin

Wild Graveolen (Nyekak)

Wild Red Durian Tree (Sabah)

Kura Kura (Testudinarium)

Fruits grown on tree trunk

Where to buy them in Sarawak? According to Simon Longman, he suggested going to Kuching Sunday Market in Jalan Satok, Kuching, Sarawak in December or January. One such wild durian may cost you RM 15 - 20. It cost RM30 for 4 in the whole tamu’ (Sunday market).

According to Sabah Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister Datuk Masidi Manjum, in interior Ranau sukang (Durio gravolens) are plentiful. Wild durian known as sukang or tabelak, the fruit is also called 'durian hutan', is mainly found growing wild in the jungles of Sabah. The sukang's main attraction is its red-coloured flesh. 'That's the main thing that makes it stand out,' he said, adding that this type of durian also fetched a lower price than the more common fruit.

The small-sized fruits, some about the size of a sepak takraw ball, are sold for as little as RM2 to RM3 when they are in season. It is more pungent and has a carrot-like flavour.

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Durio Graveolens
Despite it’s notoriety (or maybe because of it), Durio graveolens is the most confusing of all the durian species we’ve found

That lipstick red durian flesh is the image that most people associate with Durio graveolens

It’s possible that Durio graveolens is actually two species lumped under one name

Red-fleshed durian opening on the tree

Durio graveolens fruits at the beginning of the season for durio zibethinus

Graveolens-zibethinus hybrid

Durian of the year

Durio graveolens is the poster child of the jungle durians.  That ravishingly red interior is so shockingly bright many people question the use of food coloring. It’s also one of the most popular durian species, sold widely in markets throughout Borneo. Many people actually prefer it to regular durian, and with good reason.

related:
A Complete List of Durian Species
Durian Porn | Dalit
The Inedible Durians
A Complete List of Durian Species

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Wild durians of Borneo

THE common edible durian, Durio zibithinus, or 'durian puteh', which we talked about last week, is not the only durian to be found in Borneo.

It may come as a surprise to learn that there are about 20 wild species, with about 12 being found in Sabah. Several of these also have edible fruits, some being cultivated on a small scale.

Though they are not often seen in the main markets, rural 'tamus' and roadside stalls can be rewarding, so look out for these over the next couple of months!

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