Have you experienced the “dragon’s eye?” The longan, a sweet and tropical fruit, is a member of the same family of fruit as lychee, a crowd-pleaser on FruitStand.
The longan fruit grows in clusters that hang in droops from the tree. Each circular fruit is about 1 inch in diameter, typically ranging from the size of an olive to a small plum. The word longan means 'dragon's eye' in Cantonese because of the appearance of the seed when the shell has been removed and the fruit exposed.
The longan are small, tan colored delicacies that, when cracked open, reveal the most amazingly sweet flesh with a black seed shining through—the dragon's eye. Discard the shell and pit and you have a gourmet experience you won’t soon forget. They are syrupy sweet with a tropical honey-like flavor, not unlike a melon. The texture is very much like a grape.
Longan is high in antioxidants and vitamin C, making it a wonderful and healthy snack eaten by itself but is also wonderful in sorbets, jellies, salads, smoothies, desserts, and puddings. For a wonderful treat on a hot day, pop the whole fruit in the freezer – shell and all. Then eat them when you need that little refreshment, again, making sure to spit the seed out.
However you decide to eat your longan, we're sure you're going to love them. Keep reading to learn more about opening your longan and how to eat and drink it!
Here’s how to enjoy:
From here, the options are endless. You can leave them as they are, chop them up, blend them, whatever your recipe calls for.
Longan is an amazing snack eaten by itself. For a wonderful treat on a hot day, pop the whole fruit in the freezer – shell and all. Then eat them when you need that little refreshment, again, making sure to spit the seed out.
Fresh longan makes a great addition to any salad, if you're looking for a sweet contrast to the more savory notes. You can also add it to any fruit salad to wow your friends and family. Longan pairs nicely with mint and citrus like caviar limes.
If you want some more elaborate ideas, keep reading below.
We think you're going to fall in love with this small and delicious fruit. Once you start eating them, it will be hard to stop! Get creative and share your creative ideas with us! This is a very forgiving and easy fruit to add to things.