Durians are ripe and edible only after they fall off the trees. I have not eaten rotten durians, but durians which are unripe...the flesh is hard. In this part of the world, I doubt very much that a durian stands a chance at being left alone, uneaten and then rot.
We've been following this thread with great amusement. We have seen a lot about durians on TV, (the Travel Channel). An American chef from New York, Anthony Bourdain, travels the world in search of unusual cuisine that is indigenous to different cultures. He has featured durian several times in his travels through SE Asia. He claims to have aquired a taste for it, and describes it as tasting like almond custard...once you get past the smell. Bourdain says: "You smell like you've been french kissing your dead grandmother" It is strange we have never seen it here in south Florida where the climate is very warm. Perhaps our soil is too alkaline and winter gets just a little too cold at times? Anyone know the details on growing the trees?
So far I've seen Andrew Zimmern, the host of Bizarre Foods on the Travel Channel, refuse to take a second bite of only two foods (though I haven't seen all the episodes). One was durian. (The other was fermented tofu.) At the risk of revealing that my food horizons are quite limited, he has eaten -- often gleefully -- foods such as maggot pupae, fermented blubber, sea urchin, opossum, squirrel, jellied eels, mosquito eggs, and teriyaki cockroaches. I have to admit that all of these foods are probably much more nutritious than, say, a Big Mac. But if Andrew Zimmern couldn't eat a second bite of durian, there's no hope for most people. Anyway, that means there's more for those who enjoy it.
jk, that's a calculated marketing ploy: if the host of a show called "Bizarre Foods" presents too many of those "bizarre" foods as what they actually are - tasty - it'll undermine the premise of the show: feeding people's fear of the unknown. I've had jellied eel, possum and sea urchin and find them delicious. I draw the line at certain insects and arachnoids (locusts are fine, though), but that's just me.
Plus, one man's trash is another man's feast - there are similar shows here in East Asia presenting raw oysters, certain kinds of cheese and pickled herring in exactly the same way Mr. Zimmern would probably present candied seafood (a very expensive and delicious Japanese snack) or grilled bat wings (a less delicious, but equally expensive aboriginal dish here in Taiwan)
Aw, what the hell. I guess keeping the First World scared of durians means more of it for the rest of us :-)
And not all Durians are created equal. After a quick google, I discovered there are many named varieties with variations on the flavor, such as Monthong or Kan Yao. It reminds me of Mangos here in south Florida. A bad mango has a turpentine after-taste. A good Mango is heaven! I'm sure Durian lovers experience this too.
Btw, I think my durian seeds were a bust. After I tried to dry them for a day, they turned mushy. Anyone who does get seeds eventually, lemme know.
pk, to dry it inorder to keep and sow later the thin layer of mucilage has to be removed and clean. The seeds may still be good by cleaning and rubbing off the mucilage where it turned mushy(fungus growth?)