New fruit available in Belize

Wednesday, May 20th, 2009

Many fruits that are strange to a lot of us in Belize are truly a delicacy in other parts of the world; one such fruit is called lychee. Lychees are extensively grown in the native region of China but are also found in many countries in Asia. It was recently introduced to Belize from Honduras and is now grown in the Cayo District for local consumption. The lychee is a fleshy fruit. The outside is covered by a pink-red, roughly-textured rind that is inedible but easily removed. They are eaten in many different dessert dishes. The inside consists of a layer of sweet, translucent white flesh, rich in vitamin C, with a texture somewhat similar to that of a grape only much less moist. The center contains a single glossy brown nut-like seed which is not poisonous but should not be eaten. The fruit matures from early April to late June, about 100 days after flowering.

The seasonal fruit is grown in the village of Santa Cruz in the Cayo District. We caught up with a vendor of this delicious fruit in downtown San Pedro as he was promoting the fruit. If you want to know more about the fruit or even include it as part of your dessert dishes, you can contact Jeffery Ellis at 667-7289.

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