When you think about fruits, you would like to take a bite right away. But that’s not the case with dragon fruit. The fruit itself sounds, looks, and tastes exotic. Unlike other ordinary fruits, dragon fruit with its intimidating yet fancy exterior is hard to miss.
We understand if the sophisticated appearance of dragon fruit is stopping you from trying it. You are not alone. To be honest, it is not a simple fruit to eat. That’s what makes dragon fruit one of a kind.
If you are wondering how to cut dragon fruit without messing it up, you are in safe hands with us. By the end of this article, you will have a fresh and nicely cut dragon fruit in front of you. Let’s begin with a brief introduction to dragon fruit.
Demystifying Dragon Fruit
Dragon fruit is an amazing tropical fruit with its origin in Central and South America. It falls in the cactus family, and also goes by names such as pitahaya, pitaya, or strawberry pear.
The fruit derives its mysterious name from the alluring vibrant skin and a scaly exterior that resembles the fangs of mythical dragons. However, the inside of the fruit will take you by surprise. The flesh has a sweet, crunchy texture, and its flavor will often remind you of kiwi, watermelon, and pear blended together.
Dragon fruit is a nutritional powerhouse. Its pulp is low in calories but rich in nutrients like dietary fiber, magnesium, potassium, prebiotics, and iron. Additionally, the color pigment of the fruit comes with plant polyphenols (including vitamin C, lycopene, betalains, and beta-carotene) that prevent cells from damaging.
Choosing Dragon Fruit
You will come across different varieties of dragon fruit, each with discreet flavors. They can be differentiated with their color of skin and flesh. In general, there are three main varieties of this fruit, viz. Red, White, and Yellow.
Red dragon fruit (pitaya roja) is has a pink exterior with red flesh inside. Pink or White dragon fruit (pitaya rosa) also has pink skin, but with white flesh. Yellow dragon fruit (pitaya amarilla) has yellow skin with white flesh.
Always go for the brightly-colored dragon fruits as they are ripe. You can tell the fruit is ripe when the green points in its scales start to dry and curl up a little. The skin color should be even without wrinkles and dark spots. The fruit should feel firm with a slight giving.
Dragon fruits are harvested mostly during the summer season, from June to September. That’s when they taste the best.
Okay… Enough with this information. It’s time to cut some dragon fruits like a pro. Let’s Chop Chop!
How To Cut Dragon Fruit
Cutting a fruit might sound like a piece of cake, but dragon fruit is different. It’s easy to waste almost half of this precious fruit if you cut them incorrectly. But don’t worry. You don’t need a Samurai sword to slice it right. A simple cutting board and a sharp kitchen knife will do the job.
Step 1: Slice In Half
First, wash the fruit thoroughly. Get a clean cutting board and run the knife through the middle of the fruit to divide it into two equal halves. Start from the top and then towards the stem. Take a moment to appreciate the interior and move on to the next step.
Step 2: Separate The Fruit
The inner flesh is the only edible part of dragon fruit. Therefore, you have to separate the pulp from the skin. There are two easy methods of doing this, viz. Scooping and Peeling.
Scooping is much easier than peeling. Just slide a large spoon between the skin and the pulp as you do with an avocado. The edible part comes off on the spoon.
Alternatively, you can peel off the skin by using your fingers. For this, you can further divide the sliced fruit (step 1) into fourths.
Step 3: Chop The Fruit Into Pieces
Once the fruit is off its skin, you can chop it down into smaller pieces depending on how you want to serve it. Slice them down into quarters or semi-circles or cut them further into cubes. Don’t worry about the black seeds. They are totally edible.
Step 4: Eat The Fruit! Duh!
Phew! There you have it. You just cut dragon fruit without breaking a sweat. Now that the difficult part is over, it’s time to enjoy the fruit. If you have scooped the pulp, you can eat it right off the spoon.
Toss some cubes into lemonade, iced tea, or any other tropical drinks to give a new flavor to your beverage. Combine it with coconut milk, pineapple, or watermelon to coll yourself on a hot day. Try to get creative with the fruit as it also goes well as salad, smoothies, and desserts.
Storing Dragon Fruit
It is best to consume dragon fruit when fresh. The fruit will inevitably lose its original flavor once cut. Decide how much you can eat within the same or the next day and slice the fruit accordingly. Use an airtight container to store any leftovers in the refrigerator. You can store them for up to three months in a freezer to use for smoothies.
Here’s a secret tip. Sprinkle some lemon juice on the fruit to keep it fresh for longer.
Dragon fruit is nature’s wonder. It is one of the most coveted fruits in the world. It looks strange for a fruit, but that’s what makes this food unique. Once you get a hang of its luscious taste, it’s difficult to let go of it. You will fall in love with dragon fruit.
You can experiment with the versatility of dragon fruit by including it in your daily raw food diet plan. It provides you with all the essential nutrients to keep you happy and healthy. Your healthy diet plan is incomplete without this amazing fruit. And to get the best out of this fruit, you should know how to cut it correctly.
Now it’s your turn. Good Luck.