|The Nigerian Fruit Bowl|
Fruits are nature's sweets...and they represent part of the human diet that provides vital micro nutrients required for the body to function efficiently. They come in all manner of exciting tastes, textures, flavours, shapes and sizes. Its interesting to observe also how they vary from one continent, country to the next!
I love fruits and I aim to eat as many varieties as I can lay my hands on, as often as possible. I in fact seek out exotic ones, just so I can experience their tastes and textures and quite frankly admire the creator for His ingenuity and care for humans.
Nigeria has her own share of indigenous fruits (read one of my previous posts of Nigerian Fruits here) and I remember that we used to pick them rather than purchase them back in the days. There seemed at the time to be lots of different fruit bearing trees, someone had some type of fruit growing in their backyard. You just had to be friends with a member of the family to have access to the fruits.
The fact that the fruits are seasonal is also intriguing because it appeared we were all on some sort of a Fruit Plan...! It was fun as it gave us something to look forward to season after season.
So I visited one of the local markets closest to me and I was like a little girl in a sweet shop. Some fruits I have not seen in years were staring me in the face...agbalumo, awin, amumu, water apples, guavas, CASHEW!!! I had to have them all. So I did. I also got some of the other well known fruits like mangoes, pineapples, papaya, watermelon and English apples (which are now sold all over the streets of Lagos as well as grapes and English pears).
|Water apples, Guavas, Amumu, Mangoes, Pineapple, Cashew apples|
I was more interested in the indigenous fruits for obvious reasons...I have not seen or had them in years. I was really excited to get back home to start savouring the individual tastes of these fruits. I observed that the fruits are still pretty much organic going by their sizes and imperfections, way that nature intended. They tasted good and eating them once again brought back some good memories from my childhood.
I thoroughly enjoyed eating them and even used left overs in some of my fruit salad and juice recipes which I will share with you in due course.
I was keen to keep the remaining fruits arranged in a bowl and display on my kitchen island; y'know just as am used to doing in England, placing a bowl of fruits in the kitchen for ready use, but I soon found out that this was not a good idea as fruit flies also wanted to eat my fruits.
In England, fresh fruits can be stored at room temperature for well over a week without spoilage. The room temperature in Lagos which averages about 30 degrees, on the other hand, speeds up the spoilage process.
Keeping your fruits fresh
Lagos scenario: I found that washing the fruits in fresh clean water, pat dry with a kitchen towel and then placing them in a vacuum bag such as zip-lock bags and then placing them in the vegetable compartment of the refrigerator will ensure the fruits keep fresh for well over a week. If you eat your fruits regularly they should not stay that long before they are all gone...
|Nigerian Fruit Bowl|