Thailand is blessed with a vast selection of exotic and beautiful fruits. Everyone will be familiar with bananas, papaya, pineapple, mangos, pomelo, guava, and dragonfruit, so we have decided to omit them from our list. Here is our quick guide to common, but perhaps lesser know types of Thai fruit that you will find at markets all across Pattaya.
1. Mangosteen (Mang-kut)
Mangosteens are fruits that are available across Southeast Asia but are most popular in Thailand. They are a similar size to a small orange and have a deep purple outer and sweet white flesh which is in sections, the number of which will be determined by the petals on the bottom of the outer layer. They can be eaten when ripe or juiced.
2. Rambutan (Ngor)
Rambutan has a red and yellow outer covering which almost gives the appearance of being covered in hair. The inner fruit is white in colour and has a large seed. The fruit is sweet and very popular amongst Thais when in season.
Durian is perhaps known around the world for its putrid smell and is often banned in many offices and on public transport. It is a large fruit that has a green rind that is cover in large bumps that resemble spines. The inner is a soft and light yellow colour. It is the most expensive of the Thai fruits with locals not deterred by the smell!
4. Rose-apple (Chompoo)
The rose-apple looks very similar to a red pear in terms of its shape and has a shiny red edible skin. It is very refreshing in the hot weather with a crisp and crunchy texture. Locals often eat the fruit with salt on sugar, but foreigners prefer the more natural form.
5. Jackfruit (Khanoon)
Jackfruits are about the size of a large melon and have a similar shell to a durian. The inner segment is bright yellow and slightly waxy with a large stone in the centre of each section. It is sweet-smelling and sweet to taste and usually eaten raw although sometime Thais like to eat it fried.
The langsat is native to Thailand and very similar outer appearance to lychee in that it is small and round with a rind that is very easy to peel with the fingers. The centre is a light creamy colour, very juicy, and has a slightly tart taste. It breaks into five segments and is often used to quench thirst so is great for drinks or eaten raw.
7. Longan (Lam-Yai)
Longan is grown mainly in the north of Thailand around Chiang Mai and is part of the lychee family. They have a dark yellowy-brown outer skin that is quite hard but can be broken in the fingers and then the fruit is squeezed out. They are very sweet to taste and popular when in the season as they are relatively cheap.
8. Snake Fruit (Sala)
The snake fruit has a hard but brittle outer shell which, when broken, reveals a fruit with white lobes that can be either sweet or sour. They have small seeds which aren’t edible which can make them fiddly to eat.