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10 Strange Fruits From Around the World

By Casey Chong - June 02, 2020
10 Strange Fruits From Around the World

Local and imported fruits like durians, papayas, apples, and oranges are commonly found in Malaysia. But there are some fruits that you probably never heard of. Well, here are the 10 strange fruits around the world that you may find them interesting.


1) Ackee

Originally a native of West Africa, ackee is now known as Jamaica’s national fruit. Despite the “national” status of this bulbous fruit, it isn’t particularly safe to eat. At least not for an unripe ackee fruit, which contains a toxin called hypoglycin. This type of poison can cause an acute illness dubbed the Jamaican Vomiting Sickness. Apart from making you throw up, the illness can even lead to coma or worst case scenario… death. Apparently, the only edible portion is the fleshy yellow arils. The ackee fruit is commonly served with codfish.

strange fruits

Image credit: thespruce.com

2) Buddha’s Hand

Take a look at the fruit below. It sure looks like a mutated fruit reminiscent of an octopus or some scary-looking fingers. But beyond that, Buddha’s hand is actually part of a citron family. Some said the fruit tastes like a lemon and typically used to make jam and marinades. Buddha’s hand is commonly found in China and India.

strange fruits

Image credit: organicfacts.net

3) Feijoas

Originated from South America, feijoas are popular in countries like Brazil and New Zealand. The green, oval-shaped fruit also has two easy-to-pronounce nicknames which are “pineapple guava” and “guavasteen”. Feijoas are uniquely sweet and have a distinct aroma. Like kiwifruit, they are typically eaten by scooping out the soft flesh with a spoon. While you can eat them raw, feijoas are also versatile enough to be used for baked goods like cakes and muffins as well as jams and jellies.

strange fruits

Image credit: healthyfood.co.nz

4) Kiwano

Otherwise known as horned melon, kiwano is a South African fruit that also can be found in Australia and New Zealand. It tastes somewhat like a salty cucumber and often used for decorating food, thanks to its uniquely spiky outlook. And just so you know, kiwano even made a TV appearance (it was called “Golana melon” instead) in one of the episodes on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine!

strange fruits

Image credit: tastessence.com

5) Pawpaw

Ever heard of a pawpaw fruit? Apparently, it was the largest edible fruit native to the United States. Here’s an interesting trivia: Pawpaws also happens to be Thomas Jefferson’s (yes, the 3rd President of the USA) favorite fruit! Pawpaws are described as a combination of banana, citrus, and mango in taste.

strange fruits

Image credit: agmrc.org

6) Physalis

A native of America, physalis is a bright-orange little fruit encased in a lantern-like husk. It has a tomato-like taste if you eat it raw. Some used it for fruit salads, puddings, preserves, and jams.

strange fruits

Image credit: indigenousbartender.com

7) Rollinia

A native of Brazil, rollinia is a tropical fruit that can be eaten raw or fermented to make wine. It has a taste reminiscent of a lemon meringue pie.

strange fruits

Image Credit: H.I.S Survival YouTube

8) Salak

Nicknamed as “snake fruit”, due to its scale-like outer skin. It has a sweet taste of pineapple and banana, and best used for fruit salad. A fruit native to Indonesia and Malaysia.

strange fruits

Image credit: organicfacts.net

9) Ugli Fruit

No doubt that the unsightly appearance of the outer skin is quite a turn-off. However, this Jamaican wild fruit on the inside isn’t “ugly” at all. Upon tasting, it has a familiar citrusy taste of tangerine, orange, and grapefruit.

strange fruits

Image credit: shockinglydelicious.com

10) Wood Apple

A native of India, wood apple or bael is a fruit that requires a knife to break open its woody exterior. The sticky pulp on the inside is versatile enough. It can be eaten raw or made into jams and chutney.

strange fruits

Image credit: drhealthbenefits.com