Rambutans are spunky tropical fruits that look like bright red pom poms, complete with rubbery “hairs” on their waxy peels. Similar texture to a lychee, rambutan’s translucent fruit is crisp, juicy and tropically sweet. Rambutan fruit’s flesh has a jellylike texture that brings to mind a dense, crisp, nectarous grape. Because of their watery flesh, the flavor has a fresh, clean quality and a strawberry sweetness.
These rare fruits are a delicious addition to your fruit repertoire, and your friends at FruitStand are here to help you eat them like a pro! Rambutan flesh can be eaten raw, cooked, candied or juiced once you pop them from their thin peels. The peels and pits of these beautiful stone fruits are inedible and should be discarded.
How to prepare your rambutan will depend on the recipe you’re using. Here are the most common ways to prepare fresh rambutans for just about any recipe!
Before using rambutan in your snacks and recipes, the fruit must be removed from the peel. Using a sharp paring knife, carefully score the peel around the circumference. Then, twist the top and bottom half of the peel gently, and the rambutan fruit will easily separate from the rind.
Rambutan fruit is very easy to slice and dice in food, soft drink and cocktail recipes. To slice a rambutan, score the translucent fruit carefully around its circumference with a paring knife. Then, remove the pit from the jellylike fruit by peeling it carefully away with your fingers. The fruit is now ready to cut into slices or chunks. That’s it! You did it!
Rambutan is a versatile fruit that can be cooked using many techniques. Here are some of the best ways to get more rambutan into your everyday recipes.
- Grilling: This fruit is delicious when skewered and caramelized over grill flames.
- Baking: Rambutan can be baked into cakes, breads and pies.
- Confection: The delicate and sweet flavor of rambutan is delicious in jams, jellies and candy making.
Rambutan comes to life in refreshing soft drinks and cocktails.
- Juicing: Rambutan should be removed from the peel before juicing. Then, simply feed the jellylike fruit into your juicer for a crisp delicate juice. Rambutan tastes great with other produce like strawberry, peach and cucumber.
- Smoothies: If you’re wondering what to do with ripe rambutan, smoothies are a fantastic option. To best prepare your rambutan for smoothies, freeze them. Start by peeling them and removing their seeds. Space the fruit out on a cookie sheet fitted with wax paper and pop them in the freezer. Once frozen, store them in an airtight container in the freezer. You can easily pop frozen rambutan cubes into smoothies!
- Water: Dice up pieces of rambutan to add to your water bottle along with fresh herbs like mint for an eye catching and delicious refresher.
When your FruitStand shipment of rambutans arrives, they may already be ripe. Ripe, fresh rambutans have a waxy, scruffy peel that changes color from bright red with green, which grows darker red as it ages. These little buddies are usually picked when green, then ripen once harvested.
Rambutans can only be stored on the countertop for a day or two, so we recommend refrigerating them to keep them fresher for longer. Fresh rambutan fruits will keep fresh in the refrigerator for about two weeks when stored in a plastic bag or sealed container. Plus, they’re extra tasty when they’re cold!
When freezing rambutans, place whole fruits on a sheet pan with plenty of space between the fruits so they may freeze individually. Then, store them together in a freezer safe bag for up to three months. Don’t worry too much if their color isn’t as vibrant after freezing. The fruit inside will be protected and still taste delicious!
Do you feel like a rambutan eating expert now? Show us your favorite ways to prepare and eat rambutan by tagging us in your culinary masterpieces on Instagram @Fruitstandcom!