Early December – second Durian season

Here in Penang, we get two Durian seasons.  The first is the one with the big Durian festival that last through the month of June.  It’s a pretty big deal because tourism is one of Penang’s top industries.  Durian is a big draw for many tourists.  Yes, some people do go out of their way to find a bit of the stinky fruit.  My family has two.

We’re at the start of Penang’s second Durian season, which if the harvest is good, can last until the end of Feb.  The best stuff can be found closer to the farms.  Go out to Balik Pulau, There are pop up stands all along the road past the Teluk Bahang Dam.

There are going to be pop up stands all over town, and they should be fresh Durian.  How could they not be, they fly off the truck to the eager fanatics in Penang.  In my experience, the pop up stands won’t know the varieties they are selling.  They don’t know a D7 from a D11.  You need to get out to Balik Pulau to get that kind of information.

So here’s my Advice to first time durian eaters  

  1. Go with a friend.  Bring a fanatic.  They aren’t hard to find.  Their enthusiasm for Durian is hard to miss, and sometimes infectious.  The other advantage of getting Durian in a group is that you can sample more varieties.  Ask for the sweetest ones your first time.
  2. Get it fresh.  Don’t buy from a container the first time.  Don’t try Durian-flavored ANYTHING.  Watch them crack the spiky fruit open.   Video it for your facebook feed.
  3. Eat from closer to the stem.  The tastier meat is closer to the top of the fruit.
  4. Bring water, tissues and hand sanitizer.  Your hands will get dirty, if you eat durian correctly.  hand sanitizer will help get the smell off your hands.

Post your pics on the Living in Penang Facebook page.  Have a lovely durian feast.