How to Eat Dragon Fruit?

 A glance at the bright-colored exterior of a dragon fruit - the vibrant red-pink shade topped with green scale-like accents makes you believe that the fruit will probably have a fiery, tangy taste. While this is not true, it has a mild sweet taste that renders it a suitable ingredient to create juices, smoothies, jams and sauces.

We will give ideas to bring out the exotic flavor of this fruit in a green smoothie, but before that let's get a few facts clear.

The Origins

Popularly known as Pitaya, the Dragon Fruit is native to South America. In earlier days, it was considered food of the wealthy. Today, the plant is widely cultivated in tropical countries including Argentina, Peru and Mexico.

There are three main varieties of Dragon Fruit - red exterior and white interior, red exterior and pink interior and yellow exterior and white interior. The skin is thin and covered with scales. The pulpy flesh inside has numerous fine, edible black seeds. To be specific about its taste, it would be apt to describe it as a blend of pear and kiwi.

Nutritional Facts and Health Benefits

It is difficult to list the benefits of consuming Dragon Fruit as they too many to mention. However, you can find some of the major ones.

· This tropical fruit is rich in fiber. As a result, it is recommended for weight loss. Most natural weight loss supplements sold on the market include it as an active ingredient.

· The antioxidants found in Dragon fruit have also shown to stabilize blood sugar levels in individuals suffering Type 2 diabetes.

· It helps regulate cholesterol and blood pressure.

· Cancer research specialists claim that the fruit could be useful in preventing and curing cancer because of its rich antioxidant content. However, study is still underway.

· Besides the benefits mentioned above, dragon fruit supplies the body with Vitamin A, Vitamin B (B1, B2, and B3), Vitamin C, protein, calcium, iron, carotene, phosphorus, potassium and magnesium.

Ideas for Dragon Fruit Green Smoothies

Dragon fruit can be eaten in its fresh and dried form. You can eat it by cutting the fruit into two and scooping out the flesh. The other method to eat it is cutting the fruit into smaller pieces and peeling away the skin. 

Juicing and blending is another popular method of consuming the fruit. Owing to its sweet and refreshing taste it is used a sweetener in other juices, cakes and ice creams. This is also the same reason why it is used in green smoothies along with bland and bitter tasting leafy greens such as collard, chard, kale and spinach.

· Smoothie with Kale and baby Spinach

For this smoothie recipe you will require the flesh of one fruit scooped out, 2 apples, 1 banana, 3 kale leaves, 2 handfuls of baby spinach leaves, 2 cups of water and 3 mint leaves. Blend the ingredients to form a smooth smoothie. You can add a few drops of lime juice to enhance its flavor.

· Smoothie with baby Spinach and Blueberries

Dragon fruit, spinach and blueberries make the healthiest punch. You will need half a cup of dragon fruit flesh, half a cup of blueberries, 2 cups of baby spinach, 4 ounces almond milk (unsweetened) and 1 gram soaked chia seeds.

· Smoothies with Butter Lettuce and Pear

This green smoothie is easier to prepare and requires fewer ingredients. You will need one ripe dragon fruit, 1 ripe pear, and 1 cup of water and 4 leaves of butter lettuce. Blend till you can see no more chunks. Pour in a tall glass and serve.

Dragon fruit green smoothies taste best when served chilled. 

You can cut up and store the fleshy pulp in a refrigerator, in an air tight container.

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