FWNAB: Carambola (or Star Fruit)
The Carambola – also known as ‘star fruit’ because of its almost perfect cross-section shape – is native to South East Asia, and popular all over the Asian continent.
There are two slightly different varieties of this fruit: a sweet one and a sour one.
Indian Carambola is generally a little bit more sour, and bright yellow when ripe.
The sweeter Carambola comes mostly from China and is normally bright green even when ripe. (Source)
I guess the one we bought was from the second group! (At least I hope so!)
This fruit is completely edible, skin included, but it is advised to trim the ribs to remove the darker green edge, which can be quite bitter.
This fruit has many health benefits as it contains Potassium, antioxidants, fibers, and Vitamin C. Despite being a tropical fruit, it is also very low in calories.
People with kidney problems, however, or people taking certain medicines, should avoid eating it, as it contains Oxalic acid, which could be harmful in particular situations. (Source)
Some people seem to think that the qualities of this fruit are mostly decorative, because it does not taste of much.
The one we ate had a very delicate flavour indeed, somehow similar to apples, however the overall taste was lovely.
Thanks to its fresh notes, this fruit is also used in the preparation of many perfumes and beauty products.
There are really plenty of recipes featuring this versatile fruit, and not only for its pretty shape: Carambola Chicken Salad, Carambola sauce for Salmon, Scallops and Steak, an Upside down cake, Crepes, Bread, a Mango-Orange-Star Fruit Sauce, a Thai Rose Petal Salad, a Crab salad, a Shrimp salad, a Caprese, obviously Jam but also chutney, and several Tropical Smoothies.
I can’t wait to prepare my own lovely meal with the help of this beautiful fruit!
Posted on 18/09/2013, in New Food! and tagged abu dhabi, carambola, Emirates, food, new food, recipes, star fruit, travel, tropical, UAE. Bookmark the permalink. 7 Comments.
We also have that here in the Philippines but we call it ‘balimbing’. The ones we have here usually tastes sweet. I remember eating such back when we were kids. Didn’t know they also have that in India.
How interesting! I love the shape and taste of this fruit. If you have any recipe you would like to share, please let me know, thank you!! :)
It does taste really good. :) But I don’t think we use it in any recipes or use it for cooking in any way, at least not that I know of. We just usually wash it and eat it right after picking the fruit from the tree of my aunt’s neighbor in the province because they just let them rot anyway. LOL. I’m not even sure if they are being sold here in the market…
Wow, being able to eat it so fresh must be fantastic! I bet it tastes even more delicious :)
The carambola also grows in Brazil and they make juices and many other recipes. It can be very refreshing during the summer. You can make a juice with the ripe carambola or with the green ones but add some sugar and water to dilute the bitterness.
Sounds delicious!! Thank you for the tip!