For some of you, the carambola, or star fruit, may be old news. Perhaps you’re familiar with eating and cooking with it.
Many people in the U.S., though, have never tried a star fruit. This brightly colored, adorable fruit is native to Southeast Asia and the Pacific. It has recently become a staple in Caribbean cuisine, though, and has made its way into grocery stores and markets here in Florida.
While you can pick the fruit straight from the tree and eat the entire thing (minus the seeds), it can also be peeled and used as a beautiful garnish or sweet addition to baked goods.
Aside from the delicious flavor, star fruit boasts health benefits. It is a rich source of potassium, vitamin C, and antioxidants.
Here are some ideas for experimenting with this tropical fruit:
- Use star fruit as you would a pineapple: add a layer of sliced fruit to an upside-down cake or toss it into a savory stir fry.
- Make sweet chips by thinly slicing the star fruit, brushing with boiled sugar water or coconut oil, and baking at 200 degrees (F) for about an hour.
- Slide some sliced star fruit onto a fruit kebab with some melon, mango, pineapple, or citrus for a tropical treat.
- Infuse your dinner with star fruit flavor by marinating steak with some of the star-shaped slices for several hours.
Be sure to choose a star fruit that is bright yellow for peak ripeness. If you find one that is green, wait for its color to change to yellow while you turn it once a day.
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