Raw Food Episode 47 - Jenna In The Jungle - Various ...
Raw Food Episode 47 - Jenna In The Jungle - Thimbleberries, Durian & Other Wild Foods in the Hawaiian Jungle.
Rubus parviflorus (Thimbleberry) is a species of Rubus, native to western and northern North America, from Alaska east to Ontario and Michigan, and south to northern Mexico. It grows from sea level in the north, up to 2,500 m altitude in the south of the range. The plant is said to have given its name to the Thimble Islands in Connecticut, although it is very rarely seen in that region.
The durian (pronounced /ËˆdÊŠÉ™riÉ™n/) is the fruit of trees from the genus Durio belonging to the Malvaceae, a large family which includes hibiscus, okra, cotton, mallows, and linden trees. Widely known and revered in Southeast Asia as the "King of Fruits", the fruit is distinctive for its large size, unique odour, and formidable thorn-covered husk. The fruit can grow up to 30 centimetres (12 in) long and 15 centimetres (6 in) in diameter, and typically weighs one to four kilograms (2 to 7 lb). Its shape ranges from oblong to round, the colour of its husk green to brown, and its flesh pale-yellow to red, depending on the species.
The edible flesh emits a distinctive odour, strong and penetrating even when the husk is intact. Regarded by some as fragrant, others as overpowering and offensive, the smell evokes reactions from deep appreciation to intense disgust. The odour has led to the fruit's banishment from certain hotels and public transportation in Southeast Asia.
The durian, native to Brunei, Indonesia and Malaysia, has been known to the western world for about 600 years. The British naturalist Alfred Russel Wallace famously described its flesh as "a rich custard highly flavoured with almonds" in the 19th century. The flesh can be consumed at various stages of ripeness, and is used to flavour a wide variety of savoury and sweet edibles in Southeast Asian cuisines. The seeds can also be eaten when cooked. The name durian comes from the Malay word duri (thorn) with suffix -an.
There are 30 recognised Durio species, at least nine of which produce edible fruit. Durio zibethinus is the only species available in the international market: other species are sold in their local regions. There are hundreds of durian cultivars; most of them have a common name and a code number starting with "D". Many consumers express preferences for specific cultivars, which fetch higher prices in the market.
It is a dense shrub up to 2.5 m tall with canes 3-15 mm diameter, often growing in large clumps which spread through the plant's underground rhizome. Unlike most other members of the genus, it has no thorns. The leaves are palmate, 5-20 cm across, with five lobes; they are soft and fuzzy in texture. The flowers are 2-6 cm diameter, with five white petals and numerous pale yellow stamens. It produces a tart edible composite fruit 10-15 mm diameter, which ripen to a bright red in mid to late summer. Like other raspberries it is not a true berry, but instead an aggregate fruit of numerous drupelets around a central core; the drupelets may be carefully removed separately from the core when picked, leaving a hollow fruit which bears a resemblance to a thimble, giving the plant its name.
The species typically grows along roadsides, railroad tracks, and in forest clearings, commonly appearing as an early part of the ecological succession in clear cut and forest fire areas.
Thimbleberry fruits are larger, flatter, and softer than raspberries, and have many small seeds. Because the fruit is so soft, it does not pack or ship well, so thimbleberries are rarely cultivated commercially. However, wild thimbleberries make an excellent jam which is sold as a local delicacy in some parts of their range, notably in the Keweenaw Peninsula of Upper Michigan. Thimbleberry jam is easily made by combining equal volumes of berries and sugar and boiling the mixture for two minutes before packing it into jars.
Thimbleberry plants can be propagated most successfully by planting dormant rhizome segments, as well as from seeds or stem cuttings.
In a pinch, the leaves of the thimbleberry are recognized as a handy "toilet paper". They are large, soft and non-irritating.