Thursday, June 17, 2010

Odd fruit, odd friends

Me being me, I got into a conversation with the guys that run this corner fruit stand in Olinda. Very educational!

It all started because I drank cajá juice on the bus from Maceió. It was delicious--but, I wondered, what in Betsy's name was it? Turns out, the cajá looks like a tiny orange. There's loads of them in the basket on the left. In the foreground on the right, we have sapoti (looks like a kiwi but more round), and pinha. I bought some acerola too, which made a nice caipirinha!

Have you ever seen a cajú (cashew)? Before landing in Brazil, of course I was familiar with the nut, but I had no idea it came from a fruit! The fruit juice is okay--I'm developing a taste. I heard rumors that the oil surrounding the nut is toxic, but I've also read that there are medicinal properties to it. More interestingly, my zany new friend (below) told me that people use the oil in homemade tattooing procedures--yikes!

The red thing I'm sampling is jambosa, or, appropriately, rose apple. It looks like a giant radish and has a similarly crispy, crunchy texture, but tastes mildly sweet rather than peppery. In fact, it did taste quite like a rose and an apple. Que legal, hein?