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Mystery Fruits Can Enhance and Entertain

Why eat the same old bananas and grapes when there are lots of other, exotic fruits to choose from? Get out of a rut by checking out these five mysterious fruits.
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Ugly Fruit

Ugly fruit also goes by Uniq fruit or the trademarked spelling of Ugli. Think baggy grapefruit or a grapefruit crossed with a shar pei. Technically speaking, this is a tangelo from Jamaica. It comes into season in late October and is available nine months of the year.

The store I went to didn't have an "ugly" section, so I can only report what others say. The rumpled skin makes it easy to peel and section. It is citrusy -- somewhere between a tangerine and a grapefruit. You can put it in sweet or savory dishes. In fact, it also makes a fabulous hot toddy when the juice is mixed with rum and brown sugar (making it a "beautiful" fruit, in my book). It makes a mean marmalade, too.

Ugly fruit is high in fiber and loaded with vitamin C.

Speaking of citrus, I sampled an Australian orange and can report that this is an orange, whatever its Down Under pedigree. It looked like a tangerine with a snout and peeled easily.

Cherimoya

Pronounced "cheer-i-moya," this pale green "hand grenade" with shingled skin reportedly tastes like pineapple, mango, and strawberry. Schueller describes the taste as tutti-frutti. Cherimoyas are generally available year-round, and the white flesh can be eaten as a snack or baked into treats, such as a waffle.

Cherimoyas contain vitamin C, phosphorus, and thiamine. A respectable chunk contains 95 calories and less than 1 gram of fat.

Pomegranate

This unusual fruit from the Iran (Persia) area figured in Greek mythology. "It's been around for a long time," agrees Schueller. It's a rosy pod of gel-covered seeds. Apparently, the gel is highly successful as a dye. Don't open one unless you have a shirt you use just for opening pomegranates, Schueller jokes. Even then, open the fruit and rake the seeds out of the overturned rind underwater, he advises.

People eat both the seeds and pulp, although some prefer the surrounding gel to the seeds. Pomegranates are tart! And low in fat and sodium while high in fiber and potassium.

OK, here I go. Opened it. Should have worn the shirt! Nuts. It's seedy, with some clear, rose-colored goo around the seeds. Quite tasty!

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