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Durian is really gross [Mar. 26th, 2006|08:19 pm]
I have discovered what is quite possibly the most disgusting flavor in the world: durian fruit.

I went shopping at POM (Pacific Ocean Market, the mega-asian grocery nearby) yesterday, and the garden wafers were on sale for 99 cents a package, so I picked some up. These are like standard waffle cookies (you know, the kinds that come in strawberry-vanilla-chocolate packs), except that, being from a different part of the world, they're a lot less sweet and come in different flavors.

They had durian flavored cookies, so I said what the heck and got a package, because I'm all about trying things at least once, and, well, durian, it's one of those things you hear about. There are plenty of people who like it, apparently, but its scent is... very powerful, and they're frequently banned in hotels, subways, and other public places in southeast asia.

I'm just glad I bought a package of melon wafers, too.

As people at my philosophew's birthday party this afternoon can attest, durian is nasty-flavored. (I brought the cookies along because I had to share.) The cookies smelled a lot worse than they tasted, but much of flavor is scent, so... yeah. The best I can describe it is that it's sort of stale garlicky-fishy-fruity.

Some people found it much more offensive than others. We quarantined them on the table outside, and the dog got into the bag that was holding them. She chewed up the bag, but left the cookies unmolested.

It's also worth noting that the actual fruit is about the size of a soccer ball and covered with spikes. I think this means it qualifies as a biological weapon -- not only is it really stinky, you could hit somebody with one and do significant damage.

So. Now you know. ...and knowing is half the battle.

[User Picture]From: melted_snowball
2006-03-26 07:37 pm (UTC)
I'm told that the taste of good durian is really terrific, despite the nasty smell. Maybe the sugar wafers you got didn't get enough of the good part, and just kept the nasty smell.
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[User Picture]From: dr_tectonic
2006-03-26 08:08 pm (UTC)
Distinctly possible -- likely, even!
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[User Picture]From: melted_snowball
2006-03-26 08:26 pm (UTC)
The wikipedia article is particularly funny.

"...in the species name, zibethinus refers to the Indian civet, Viverra zibetha. There is disagreement regarding whether this name, bestowed by Linnaeus, refers to civets eating durian fruit — which they have been known to do — or to the durian smelling like the civet..."
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[User Picture]From: theotherqpc
2006-03-26 09:01 pm (UTC)
i LOVE durian!

one of the asian markets here has a sign above the durian wafers:
"WARNING! these wafers are durian flavored. they are NOT rotten! we will not accept returns1"
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[User Picture]From: theotherqpc
2006-03-26 09:03 pm (UTC)


try a durian smoothie sometime - it gives you a better idea of the flavor. underneath the burnt garlic/onion flavor, there's a really nice sweet custard flavor.
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[User Picture]From: zalena
2006-03-26 09:05 pm (UTC)
I'm guessing durian might fall into the same category as other disgusting foods. At some point people started eating it because they were desperate and then it became a nostalgia thing.

Ex. Peanut butter. Margarine. Vegemite.
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[User Picture]From: eto_theipi
2006-03-27 12:19 am (UTC)
I once worked at a company where engineers would sometimes say foolish things like "If that's my bug, I'll eat durian!". After a couple incidents, signs went up next to the "Please do not smoke next to this door" signs, asking that durians not be opened near them either.

I tried some, after one of the bugs was discovered (they took pity on the poor guy whose bug it was and didn't make him eat the whole thing). The taste is not all that bad. The aftertaste, however, was awful. It was like I'd gargled gasoline. And it stuck around for hours. Ugh.
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[User Picture]From: jofish22
2006-03-27 07:19 am (UTC)
I always felt the smell was much worse than the taste. As far as the fresh fruit goes, it tastes alright: more than anything you notice that it's pretty silky in texture, almost creamy. I've seen the smell described, inaccurately, as being like rotten corpse, but it's definitely distinctive. I once walked into the Berkeley Bowl with snowninja7 and you could smell them from the foyer. In Singapore they often have signs up in office buildings or before you go on the subway with No Durian Allowed symbols on them...
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From: dencoartist
2006-03-27 07:34 am (UTC)
A. No durian wafers at the opening,please! :)

B. There's a place over on S.Federal, I think, that makes --ready?-- durian smoothies! (collective 3rd grade ewwwwwwwww!)
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[User Picture]From: drdeleto
2006-03-27 08:31 am (UTC)
durian, it's one of those things you hear about.

Or, in my case, not. Thanks for the warning!
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[User Picture]From: dcseain
2006-03-27 02:29 pm (UTC)
Friends of mine went to Vietnam and had durian there. They said it was delicious there, and that the stuff here sucks. Much like persimmon, fresh off the tree is apparently better.
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