Chinese Produce You’ve Never Eaten

Published in Gourmet Live 01.18.12
Josey Miller uncovers seven Asian fruits and vegetables to try

During a recent trip to Hong Kong, I snapped photo after photo of striking fruits and vegetables, some of which looked vaguely familiar and some of which I’d never seen before. Back at home in New York, I wanted to identify them and learn how to use them in my own kitchen, so I enlisted the help of Chris Cheung, executive chef of Lair, a Chinese fusion restaurant not far from New York’s Chinatown. He shared his kitchen expertise for the following seven food finds—all of which are worth trying…with one possible exception.

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Dragon Fruit

Customers always ask Cheung about dragon fruit, or pitahaya, when they see it in his presentations: “It has this beautiful, bright-red, unique shell that’s great for plating.” The flesh inside is a milky white, dotted with seeds—but it’s the outside that clearly takes center stage with this fruit. He also recommends using the shells as cups for serving other fruit. As for the flavor? “It reminds me a lot of a kiwi,” he says. “It’s not overly sweet, but it has enough sugar content to be tasty.”


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