4

Spotlight On: The Mangosteen

^
Keep Houston Press Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Houston and help keep the future of Houston Press free.

A couple months ago, I ventured out to 99 Ranch Market and saw some fresh mangosteens parked in the middle of the fruit section. Although I was curious about how they tasted, I was put off by the price ($8.99/pound) and the fact that they looked pretty tired in comparison to the surrounding array of fruit. Not knowing what an awesome find that was, I ended up buying some canned mangosteens instead.

After doing some further investigation when I got home, I learned that the mangosteen was long considered illegal for US import due to regulation of irradiation of the fruit. Still rare here, in 2007, mangosteens were approved for import from Thailand in the midst of a craze about the supposed health benefits from the fruit. The craze wasn't new. Supposedly, during her reign Queen Victoria attempted to have the fruit imported to England, even offering knighthood to whoever could pull it off. However, no one was successful. Since then, it has been called the "queen of fruits."

Kicking myself for not buying a fresh mangosteens, I grabbed a can opener and plopped the contents into a large soup bowl. The fruit was a lot smaller than the fresh version in the store and, of course, peeled. It was mushy, and tasted like the lovechild of a canned pear and a canned mandarin orange. Also, it was peppered with pesky flat lima bean-size seeds.

My canned mangosteen was pretty tasty for canned fruit, but it was still sugary canned fruit (kicks self again). I'm not sure if I believe most of the hype surrounding the mangosteen, but it was still nice to try. Give it a shot.

Keep the Houston Press Free... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Houston with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.

 

Join the Press community and help support independent local journalism in Houston.

 

Join the Press community and help support independent local journalism in Houston.