Dragon Fruit

Dragon Fruit 5

The mind of a foodie is a strange place to be. You literally get EXCITED by food! You get deliriously happy when you make or eat something fabulous! And I had both feelings when I encountered the Dragon Fruit. I have never had such a visceral response to a piece of fruit until I saw the Dragon Fruit for the first time. My heart raced a little bit faster, my eyes probably dilated, my breath caught in my throat, and all I heard on a quiet exhale that I think came from me was, “Oh, my God! What is that?” Yes, it was love at first sight!

Β The Dragon Fruit also known as Pitaya is the fruit of a cactus that grows wild on St. Croix. One of my favorite people on the island is my friend John Canegata. He shared a beautiful white Dragon Fruit with me recently. He and his daughter had to brave a hill and slay a few stinging nettles to get this Dragon (Fruit) but it was SO worth it! Then another favorite person Mary Roebuck shared a red one with me a few weeks later from her garden.

These fruits looked like nothing I have ever seen before. A radiant pink succulent skin, with lime green scales patch-working its way across the oval shaped fruit. You HAVE to pick it up on sight. It is so unusual…almost otherworldly, extraterrestrial looking. It just doesn’t make sense.

Dragon Fruit

Then you open it, and the flames of your curiosity are fanned to a fever pitch. The inside is speckled with an infinite number of tiny black seeds like the Kiwi. When I cut into it, it yielded easily to the knife and separated. As if saying, “Hey, I’m really good. Check me out!” Similarly, when I scooped out the strange watermelon-like flesh, I didn’t have to fight to get the fruit out. All I had to do was follow the natural curve. Yep, it really wants to be tasted.

And the question becomes, “What does it taste like?” You would think for all its flamboyant appearance and outrageous bright colors it would be shocking taste-wise, but it actually isn’t. It is incredibly mild in flavor. Like a cross between a kiwi (just because of the seeds) and a super-mild almost tasteless watermelon. The red variety was a bit more flavorful, but only by about a millimeter.Β  I made a Dragon Fruit Wine Spritzer with it that I will share soon.

If you ever get a chance to try the Dragon Fruit, say yes!! Edible fuchsia? When was the last time you saw anything in nature with lime green and fuchsia as their chosen color combinations? It is just an experience you have to have! If not, come down to the island and try some for yourself! They are in bountiful season. Enjoy!


Dragon Fruit4


9 thoughts on “Dragon Fruit

  1. I’m always open to new food, especially fruits and vegetables. The color, beauty and uniqueness caught my eyes when I first say the dragon fruit at an international market on the mainland. Then a friend posted a picture on facebook. She encountered the fruit during a tour up blue mountain…that’s a trek too far for me. Where on island can these be found?

        1. Good for you, John! Welcome to the Rock! I hope you have a wonderful time! πŸ™‚ Some of my favorites are: Savant and Eat at Canebay, and Cafe Christine (only opened for lunch). If you would like some local restaurants that serve traditional Crucian foods, you can check out Lorraine Chicken Shack, Harvey’s, Paquito’s. Many of the local restaurants that serve Traditional foods are opened mostly in the day time and close before 6pm. Write back and let me know how your trip went! πŸ™‚

  2. Your pictures are Amazingly Gorgeous. I too had the same feeling when I first encountered dragon fruit. I have never seen it in Tobago growing up but first saw it here in Miami and decided to try it. I actually did not like it. And it doesn’t really have much of a taste. I should say I didn’t like it “straight”. There was this weird taste of no taste to me.. lol. But I did not mind it when I tried it in a drink. But I think it would be a pass for me.. which is weird… lol.. I eat anything!!

  3. I just stumbled on your site looking for a recipe for stew chicken…and now here I am at work, not working but wrapped up in this amazing blog! I love your writing and your recipes, and your photos are beautiful.

    I also LOVE dragonfruit! Go figure, it is really easy to find in the international markets here in Atlanta. I also looked for it growing wild on St. John but no luck – it has the most interesting flavor and personality! I feel like every bite has a different taste.

    Thanks for sharing and I can’t wait to keep reading!

    1. Jessica, this has been a tough and busy month for me, but I WILL get some recipes up shortly! THANK YOU for this kind note! It reminds me that folks genuinely enjoy this labor of love. You made my day! πŸ™‚

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