Colombian fruit – don’t get confused

It is good to again be in a country where it is considered normal to eat dinner at 7pm.  In Argentina people eat dinner around midnight!  We were invited for dinner that our host prepared and I nearly starved.  Here in Colombia, there are so many fruit that I have never seen before!  There are also fruit that seem very familiar…   2014-08-09 14.50.28 The above is not a banana.  No, it is a platano, or ‘plantain’ in English.  It’s a bigger fruit than a banana and is usually sold green.  Unlike the banana, you don’t eat it raw (I have eaten a green platano raw by mistake and it was tasteless).  You fry it in a pan with oil and lemon juice and vinegar…I bought two platanos and will prepare them when they are good and ripe.  (The spanish word for ripe is ‘maduro’.)  These fruit are also available in Chile and Argentina, but I have never seen a yellow platano.  The green platano that I ate in Chile never turned yellow in a whole week!  (Which is the reason why I ate it green.)  Much to my surprise the platanos that I bought turned yellow after only one day! It must be the humid climate here in Medellin, the city where it is always Spring.  These are Granadillas in Colombia:2014-08-09 14.50.12

This is what we call Granadillas in South Africa:5_101_0108Granadillas in Colombia have a smooth orange skin and the seeds inside are greyish and sweeter than South African Granadillas.  Granadillas in Colombia are bigger than South African granadillas.  And now just to confuse you…this is a passion fruit or a maracuya:IMG-20140811-WA0015It is the same size as a Colombian granadilla, but the skin is more yellow.  The inside looks like a South African granadilla and tastes like one too!

Now for the tomate de arbol (Tomato from a tree):downloadThere are normal tamatoes in Colombia too (not great quality), but these fruit kind of look like oddly shaped tomatoes.  I have not tasted these yet, just eyeballed them in vegetable shops.  Apparently they don’t taste like tomatoes and the juice is supposed to be quite good.

The following is not a fruit, but unique enough to be mentioned here:
2014-08-09 15.12.26Do you see the white round things on the side of the mince and the spatula?  These are called arepas, made from corn.  It seems to be a staple food here.  There are thicker ones that are more yellow.  They are sweeter and made from sweet corn.  I’m looking forward to trying a sweetcorn arepa.  The normal ones are a great alternative to bread.

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