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Durian (stinky fruit), raw (organic?)

The durian (stink fruit) has a peculiar smell when raw. The flesh is soft and sweet. For lovers, the fruit tastes heavenly. Organic?
Macronutrient carbohydrates 79.94%
Macronutrient proteins 4.34%
Macronutrient fats 15.73%

The three ratios show the percentage by weight of macronutrients (carbohydrates / proteins / fats) of the dry matter (excl. water).

Ω-6 (LA, <0.1g)
Omega-6 fatty acid such as linoleic acid (LA)
 : Ω-3 (ALA, <0.1g)
Omega-3 fatty acid such as alpha-linolenic acid (ALA)
 = 0:0

Omega-6 ratio to omega-3 fatty acids should not exceed a total of 5:1. Link to explanation.

Values are too small to be relevant.

The raw durian fruit ( Durio zibethinus ) is best enjoyed fresh. It develops a strong smell reminiscent of rotten eggs. This is why it is also called stink fruit .

Use in the kitchen

The ripe fruits weigh around 2 to 4 kg and have a light yellow to greenish-yellow or grey-green skin and have many hard, woody spines. Inside the capsule fruit there are three to six fruit chambers that contain the pulp. The pulp is white-yellow, soft and sweet and has the consistency of fibrous pudding when really ripe. Otherwise the pulp is lighter and not yet pudding-like - especially not as sweet. Durian is known for its peculiar smell. It can range from nutty-vanilla to onion-like or cheese-like. The term "stinky fruit" is very justified and many people therefore do not allow themselves to try it. Sometimes they are initially deceived by the taste, which connoisseurs find to be heavenly fruity-sweet and pudding-like. The description has also been called "stinking revelation" (of love and death).

The flesh can be eaten raw as a fruit or used to make fruit juice. The juice is often used for shaved ice or processed into jam. In Asia, there are many products with a durian flavour, including cakes, ice cream, chips, chocolate and drinks. The flesh can also be added to curry dishes or fermented durian flesh (tempoyak) can be used to make spicy sauces.

The durian should not be confused with the jackfruit , which is also very popular in Southeast Asia - but cannot compare to the durian in terms of taste.

Vegan spicy durian sauce

Ingredients (for 2 people): 2 red chili peppers , 1 lemongrass , 1 cm turmeric , 1 cm ginger , 1 onion , 2 garlic cloves , 500 ml coconut milk , 1 tomato , 200 g durian, salt .

Preparation: Cut the chili peppers and lemongrass into small pieces, finely grate or chop the turmeric and ginger. Press the garlic or chop it into fine pieces. Peel the onions and cut into larger pieces. Add the ingredients up to and including the coconut milk to a pot and simmer gently for 5 to 7 minutes. Cut the durian and tomato into large cubes and add to the coconut milk. Season with salt and simmer for a further 5 to 10 minutes.

You won't find any other recipes with durian here because it is almost always eaten directly as a fruit.

Not only vegans or vegetarians should read this:
Vegans often eat unhealthily. Avoidable nutritional mistakes

Purchasing - Storage

Durian fruits are not yet available for purchase at major retailers such as Coop , Migros , Denner , Volg , Spar , Aldi , Lidl , Rewe , Edeka , Hofer , Billa (as of 2023). Durian is also rarely found in organic supermarkets such as Denn's Biomarkt and Alnatura . Durian can be bought frozen, and rarely fresh in Asian shops. You can sometimes order it from online shops. The season varies depending on the growing region . In Thailand it is from March to August, Vietnam from August to November, Malaysia from May to December and Indonesia all year round (regional growing areas alternate). 2 The durian should be intact when purchased. Overripe durian fruits open on their own, which affects the taste and can cause the fruit to spoil.

The availability of durian in the supermarkets mentioned varies depending on the size of the store, catchment area, etc. If you are interested, click on our recorded food prices for the DA-CH countries (above under the ingredient image). There you will find current prices from various supermarkets or Asian stores and their price development.

We recommend buying fully removed fruit chambers, i.e. whole pieces of fruit, preferably in a transparent plastic box with one to three such fruits each. This is the only way, with a little experience, to select really ripe portions based on the color. The fruit should be a full yellow color on the outside. This is the expression of a pudding-like consistency and a pleasantly sweet but complex taste. When you touch the core, the fruit can still look a little whitish. But if the main surface is light yellow, this means that the fruit tastes a little fibrous and not mouthwateringly sweet, and has not yet refined its flavor. If the fruit is picked too early, it cannot ripen properly, but takes on a sour taste and eventually rots. There are various varieties, such as the Musang King, Drunken Cat, Mao Shan Wang or the "Queen" Black Gold (e.g. from Pahang, Malaysia), a sub-variety of Mao Shan Wang. But Asian shops rarely know about this and simply stock the variety they can get.

Storage tips

Fresh durian can be stored in a closed container in the refrigerator for 2 to 4 days. If you want to store it for longer, you should freeze the durian. To do this, wrap the durian in cling film and place it in a bag in the freezer. Frozen durian can be kept for up to two months. 3

Ingredients - Nutritional values - Calories

Raw durian (organic) contains 147 kcal per 100 g. It is rich in dietary fiber with 3.8 g/100g. Per 100 g of durian there are 5.3 g of fat and 27 g of carbohydrates. With only 1.5 g/100 g it is low in protein. It consists of 65% water. 1 The sugar content varies greatly and can be between 3.10 and 19.97 g/100g. 10

Raw durian contains 0.37 mg of thiamine (vitamin B1) per 100 g, which corresponds to 34.0% of the daily requirement. This is comparable to quinoa (0.36 mg/100g) and corn kernels (0.38 mg/100g). Raw lentils , for example, contain a lot of thiamine. The 0.87 mg/100g corresponds to 79% of the daily requirement. 1

Raw durian contains 20 mg of vitamin C (ascorbic acid) per 100g (25.0% of the daily requirement). In comparison, lemons contain 51 mg and oranges 53 mg per 100g of fruit. Sea buckthorn berries (567 mg) and black currants (181 mg) contain a lot of vitamin C. Even yellow bell peppers (184 mg) and red bell peppers (128 mg) contain many times more. 1

The vitamin B6 (pyridoxine) content is 0.32 mg/100g (23.0% of the daily requirement). Jackfruit (0.33 mg) and plantain (0.30 mg) have a similar content. Sunflower seeds and wheat germ are rich in vitamin B6, both of which contain 1.3 mg/100g. 1

Raw durian also contains potassium . The 436 mg/100g covers 22.0% of the daily requirement. There is also plenty of potassium in cooked soybeans (515 mg), spinach (558 mg) and lamb's lettuce (459 mg). The banana , which is often cited as a good source of potassium, only has 358 mg/100g. 1

In addition, raw durian contains higher levels of folate (folic acid) , manganese ,riboflavin (vitamin B2) and magnesium . 1

You can find all the ingredients of durian, how much it covers your daily needs and comparison values with other ingredients in our nutrient tables below the ingredient image.

Health effects

Is durian healthy? Durian is rich in potassium. 1 A diet rich in potassium can have a blood pressure lowering effect and reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes. High blood pressure (hypertension) is one of the best known risk factors for cardiovascular disease and stroke. 10,12

Durian is rich in antioxidants such as flavonoids (including flavonols and anthocyanins), phenolic acids, tannins and other bioactive components such as carotenoids and ascorbic acid (vitamin C). Epidemiological studies suggest that antioxidants may reduce the risk of chronic diseases (eg cardiovascular disease, cancer and diabetes). 10,11

Durian is high in sugar, but has little effect on blood sugar levels. Compared to other fruits, durian has a low glycemic index (GI) of 49. It is believed that the fruit's fat and fiber content can compensate for the high sugar content. 13 foods with a high GI lead to a rapid rise in blood sugar levels. Frequent and large fluctuations in blood sugar levels increase the risk of developing diabetes.

Studies on animal models show that durian extracts may help in the treatment of PCOS (polycystic ovary syndrome). Although the fruit appears to be effective against various components of metabolic syndrome, specific studies on the mechanism of ovulation and menstrual disorders as well as clinical trials are lacking. 15,16

Dangers - Intolerances - Side effects

The durian fruit is usually easy to digest. An allergy to durian is rare. One case of hyperkalemia has been documented after consuming large amounts of durian. However, the elderly woman suffered from severe diarrhea and the high intake of potassium contained in the durian led to kidney damage. People who suffer from hyperkalemia should avoid potassium-rich foods such as durian or only eat them in limited quantities. 14

Alcohol and durian don't mix well because durian significantly inhibits the conversion of alcohol. But because the liver has to convert the alcohol into highly toxic substances (e.g. formic acid) before the alcohol is converted, a hangover can occur, which can be very problematic. 18

Folk medicine - natural medicine

Durian is also used in folk medicine. In Malaysia, the leaves and roots of the durian tree are boiled to make a fever remedy or anti-malaria drug. It is also said to help with jaundice, colds and swelling as well as skin diseases. The flesh of the durian is sometimes considered an aphrodisiac. 5,17

Ecological footprint - animal welfare

The durian is cultivated in tropical areas of Southeast Asia, from where it makes its way to other parts of the world - with correspondingly long transport routes. Even though Indonesia is the main producer of durian fruits, Thailand is the main exporter of this fruit. Here the fruit is harvested shortly before it is ripe so that it can be transported by land to China, the main importer of the fruit. 19 However, since the shelf life of the durian is relatively limited, it is most likely transported to Europe by plane, which is also reflected in the ecological CO 2 footprint of imported fruit.

In order to meet the growing demand for durian from many Asian countries (especially China and South Korea), large-scale land use changes and corresponding deforestation of rainforests have occurred, particularly in Malaysia. Since this has already happened in Malaysia in the past to extract palm oil, the additional deforestation has an even greater impact 19 and leads to species extinction (e.g. Malaysian tigers and fruit bats) and water supply problems. 8,9

However, these flying foxes are essential for the pollination of durian trees, which is why an intact habitat and a good ecological balance are all the more important. In addition to the deforestation of the rainforest, the way the trees are grown also has a negative impact on the environment - for example, durian trees are often planted in monocultures, where they are more susceptible to diseases. To prevent these, large amounts of (sometimes illegal) insecticides and fungicides are used. 19 Organic cultivation of durian fruits has so far been very sparse; in Malaysia, for example, there are only 6 (as of 2023) 20 organic durian farms. One reason for this could be the low demand or neutral/negative attitude of Asian consumers. 21

Worldwide occurrence - cultivation

The durian originally comes from Indonesia (Borneo and Sumatra) and probably also Malaysia. 4 Today, durian is cultivated throughout Southeast Asia and other tropical regions. In 2017, the genome of the Musang King variety was decoded. This revealed around 45,000 bioinformatically calculated genes. That is twice the number of humans and explains the extremely rich smell and taste of the fruit. 18

Commercial cultivation takes place mainly in Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines. Taiwan, Hong Kong and Singapore are the largest importers of durian. Outside Asia, the USA and Canada in particular import fresh durian fruits. The market for Europe is rather small. 5

Found in the wild

The durian tree ( Durio zibethinus ) is found in the wild mainly in the rainforests of Borneo and Sumatra. There are also usually a few related Durio species that also produce edible fruit and that grow in the wild. 4 But you should also be able to find them in the wild in Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia and Indonesia.

Cultivation - Harvest

Durian trees only grow in tropical areas (constant temperatures of 24 to 29 °C). 6 They like high temperatures and humid climates. Under favorable conditions in the rainforest, they grow to a height of 30 to 40 m. Cultivated trees, on the other hand, reach a maximum of 12 m. 4 Trees grown from seeds bear their first fruits after 8 to 10 years. Grafted trees produce fruit after 4 to 6 years. 6

To plant a new tree, you should first dig a 45 cm deep hole and fill it with soil and compost. The seed is placed on the surface so that half of it is outside the soil and thus exposed to sunlight. Then water it well and keep it moist. The seed should germinate after a few days. Durian trees are hermaphrodites, meaning they have male and female flowers. However, they cannot pollinate themselves and are dependent on cross-pollination by another tree. Fruit formation is also made more difficult by the fact that the stamens and stigmas open at different times. 6

In recent years, attempts have been made to cultivate durian in pots (tabulampot durian). Due to the long roots, this is not easy, but possible, but only in tropical climates. The trees were able to grow until the fruit ripened and bore 3-4 fruits. 7

110 to 120 days after flowering, the fruits are ready for harvest. A 20-year-old durian tree can produce up to 200 fruits per tree. 6

Durian fruits can be harvested before they are fully ripe or left to ripen on the tree. Fruits that are harvested slightly unripe can be cut off the tree with a sharp knife. 5 If you let the fruits ripen on the tree, they have a more intense flavor but do not last as long. To prevent the durian from falling down and bursting, the fruits are sometimes tied to the tree with rope. Due to the temperature difference, most durian fruits fall from the tree at night. 6

Further information

The word durian is derived from the Malay 'duri', which means thorn or spine. The durian tree ( Durio zibethinus ), also called civet tree, belongs to the mallow family (Malvaceae). Of the 34 species in the genus Durio, nine can produce fruit that is edible for humans. Durio zibethinus is the species that is most commonly grown and traded commercially.

Carrying durian on public transport and in hotels is prohibited in some Southeast Asian countries.

Alternative names:

The durian fruit is also known as stink fruit, cheese fruit or civet fruit. In English, the fruit is also called durian. It is also often called the 'King of Fruits'.

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