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The mangosteen – delicious and versatile

The mangosteen has a very special aroma; the juicy flesh tastes like a mixture of grapes, pineapples and peaches – with hints of grapefruit. These tropical fruits add an exotic note to fruit salads and they make delectable desserts and cake toppings. They also make a refreshing accompaniment for curries, poultry dishes and spicy sauces.

Facts and figures

The fruit is thought to have originated in Malaysia, but the evergreen tree thrives anywhere in the tropics. The trees can grow up to 20 meters high and as a rule, no pesticides are needed for conventional cultivation. It usually takes several years before the first harvest. Mangosteens are round, as big as a small apple and slightly flattened at the top and bottom. The thick outer skin of the ripe fruit is purple and not edible. But the flesh is snow-white and divided into segments, some of which contain seeds.

Eat mangosteens as fresh as possible

You can buy mangosteens throughout the year in well-stocked stores. Smaller fruit tend to have a more intense flavour. The fruits are flown in fresh for the European market from Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia. They are picked shortly before maturity, when their skins are still red, and will ripen in storage. Mangosteen is best chilled and eaten as fresh as possible. To do this, cut the fruit horizontally around the 'equator' and twist the two halves in opposite directions. Then fork out the juicy segments one at a time and enjoy.

Health benefits

The mangosteen is also known for its medicinal properties. It is said to have anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties. Nutritionally it delivers carbohydrates (glucose, fructose, sucrose), dietary fibre and antioxidants. The vitamin and mineral content by contrast is about the same as other fruits. 


Source: Heike Kreutz, www.bzfe.de