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Old 04-05-2005, 07:43 PM
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Tell me about cashew fruits


I like cashew nuts. I once read in one of Avram Davidson's Limekiller stories, set in the fictional Central American country of British Hidalgo (http://www.avramdavidson.org/hidalgo.htm), that the cashew tree bears an edible fruit as well as a nut. The Wikipedia confirms this, with a picture: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cashew But I've never seen a cashew fruit outside a picture, let alone tasted one. Have any of you? What are they like? Why are they not sold in supermarkets here?
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Old 04-05-2005, 08:46 PM
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Just as a guess, but not all fruits have a long enough shelf life to be shipped and sold.

You never see paw-paws for sale in the supermarket, and they are a North American native.
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Old 04-06-2005, 03:29 AM
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I've only read about cashew fruits. Technically, they're not fruits - they're swollen stems. The cashew nut hangs below the cashew pear (which gives you a clue as to the shape of the "fruit").

One interesting thing about cashews is that the nuts grow inside a double-walled shell, and there is a caustic substance between the walls. I guess the plant attracts animals that consume the fruit and leave the seed.
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Old 04-13-2005, 10:36 PM
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But is there any Doper who has actually eaten a cashew fruit? Are they any good?
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Old 04-14-2005, 05:57 AM
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[QUOTE=DrFidelius]Just as a guess, but not all fruits have a long enough shelf life to be shipped and sold.[quote]
From that Wikipedia page:
Quote:
The cashew apple contains much tannin and is very perishable. For this reason, in many parts of the world, the false fruit is just dumped after removal of the cashew nut.
I guess that explains it. I never knew that the cashew nut shell was a skin irritant though - sounds nasty:
[quote]Cashew fruit contain a potent skin irritant toxin called urushiol within the dark green nut shells. This must be removed when the seed inside is processed for consumption; this is done by shelling the nuts, a somewhat hazardous process, and exceedingly painful skin burns (similar to poison ivy burns) among processing workers are frequent.[quote]


Quote:
Originally Posted by DrFidelius
You never see paw-paws for sale in the supermarket, and they are a North American native.
I'm pretty sure you get paw-paws (or papayas as we call them) in supermarkets here in the UK
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Old 04-14-2005, 05:57 AM
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[QUOTE=DrFidelius]Just as a guess, but not all fruits have a long enough shelf life to be shipped and sold.[quote]
From that Wikipedia page:
Quote:
The cashew apple contains much tannin and is very perishable. For this reason, in many parts of the world, the false fruit is just dumped after removal of the cashew nut.
I guess that explains it. I never knew that the cashew nut shell was a skin irritant though - sounds nasty:
Quote:
Cashew fruit contain a potent skin irritant toxin called urushiol within the dark green nut shells. This must be removed when the seed inside is processed for consumption; this is done by shelling the nuts, a somewhat hazardous process, and exceedingly painful skin burns (similar to poison ivy burns) among processing workers are frequent.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DrFidelius
You never see paw-paws for sale in the supermarket, and they are a North American native.
I'm pretty sure you get paw-paws (or papayas as we call them) in supermarkets here in the UK
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Old 04-14-2005, 05:59 AM
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Oops - double post and skronky coding. Gah.
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Old 04-14-2005, 06:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Colophon
I'm pretty sure you get paw-paws (or papayas as we call them) in supermarkets here in the UK
The term pawpaw refers to more than one species of fruit; the American one isn't the papaya, but (IIRC) is related to the custard apples (cherimorya, soursop etc).
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Old 04-14-2005, 06:08 AM
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http://www.crfg.org/pubs/ff/pawpaw.html
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