Exotic Tastes to Try in Your Next Recipe

Cooking is something that we all have to do every day and it can sometimes become a little boring. We can fall into a rut and end up making the same thing over and over because they are familiar and easy, but cooking should be fun again! That’s why getting into the kitchen and creating something new is a great way to jump-start your enthusiasm.

The best way to make something new is to start with something you’ve never tried before. The health benefits of eating fresh fruit are well known but there are always new ways to get enough into your diet.

1. Dragon Fruit

Dragon fruit is a tropical fruit with a beautiful, unique appearance. You may have heard of dragon fruit before but you may not have tried it. Dragon fruit is considered a nutrition-dense fruit because it is a good source of magnesium and fiber and is naturally low-calorie. It is also rich in antioxidants such as betalains, hydroxycinnamates, and flavonoids.

What can you make with it?

Dragon fruit is usually eaten fresh. It is a great topper for salads or yogurt. Frozen pieces of dragon fruit can be blended with almond milk or coconut water until it is the texture of ice cream for a delicious frozen treat. Most commonly, though, dragon fruit is used in drinks and cocktails. Check out this recipe for a refreshing summer drink.

Dragon Fruit Lemonade

¾ oz. Monin Dragon Fruit Syrup

7 ounces lemonade

  1. Fill serving glass full of ice.
  2. Pour ingredients into serving glass in order listed.
  3. Pour mixture into mixing tin and back into serving glass to mix.
  4. Add garnish and serve

2. Pineberry

Pineberries are a relative of the strawberry plant and they look like it. They are a white berry with red seeds that looks like someone bleached the color out of a strawberry. These berries are native to North America and not a cross between a pineapple and strawberry as some may think. Some do think that they taste similar to a pineapple. Pineberries are high in fiber, folate, and vitamins A and C.

What can you make with them?

Pineberries are great fresh. They pair very well with soft cheeses like goat cheese and brie so they are a welcome addition to a cheese tray. They can be used in almost any recipe in place of strawberries. Why not try a spinach, pineberry, and goat cheese salad.

3. Agave

Agave is a plant native to the southwest United States and Central America. If people know anything about agave it’s usually that it is what is used to make tequila. While you rarely see the actual agave plant anywhere, agave nectar is used as a natural, vegan-friendly sweetener as an alternative to table sugar or honey. Agave may have more calories per tablespoon than table sugar, but it is much sweeter and will require much less to achieve the same taste.

What can you make with it?

Try substituting agave nectar into recipes calling for table sugar or honey.

4. Lychee

Lychee is a fruit that is common in East Asia, especially in China, but has been making waves in the West. They have a pleasant, chewy texture and a delicate taste that is hard to compare to any other fruit. The fruit does have a stone in the middle that needs to be removed just like a peach so be careful biting into one. Lychee is high in fiber, vitamin C, potassium, calcium, and phosphorus. Lychee has many health benefits that have been observed over the years.

What can you make with it?

Lychee is a very versatile ingredient that is delicious fresh but also holds up to being cooked. Slice it up into salads or eat a handful like you would grapes. Lychee is traditionally added to a stir-fry or cooked down into a glaze for chicken or pork.

What are you waiting for?

It’s time to get out there and try something new and creative. You might just find your new favorite fruit! You can find some good recipes online. Give them a try.

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