Exotic Fruits: Jabong & Santol

Jabong, a.k.a. Pomelo, Pummelo or Shaddock

It must have been “Exotic Fruits Week” this past week, as Diner E brought a couple of Jabong to share with everyone, while Diner A brought a few bags full of Santol.

Jabong – a citrus fruit very similar to grapefruit – is also known as Boh Look (in Cantonese), Pomelo, Pumello or Shaddock.

They’re quite large, as this one measures approximately 6″ in diameter.

You can either cut the thick, fleshy white and green rind off with a knife, or peel it by hand, which is how Diner E prefers to do it…

Diner E peeling the Jabong by hand

Actually not just peeling, but more like pulling by hand, as that’s what it takes to separate the thick rind away from the wedges within.

Here you can see just how thick the Jabong’s rind is…


7 thoughts on “Exotic Fruits: Jabong & Santol

  1. Actually, Jabong is not the Chinese name. The Chinese name is Boh Look. This fruit is traditionally eaten during full moon festival. The tart/bitterness of the fruit offsets the sweetness of the mooncake. The leaves of the Boh Look tree are also considered cleansing, and every Chinese New Year’s Eve, we would take a bath in Boh Look leaves to cleanse off the previous year and prepare for the new. Every Chinese family would want to have a Boh Look tree growing in their yard.

  2. Justin, thanks for clearing that up. On that note, I fixed the post.

    Now I’m curious exactly where the term “Jabong” comes from. It may have possibly originated from Jabonga, a town in the province of Agusan del Norte in the Philippines.

  3. Pomai, in Hong Kong they use the rinds of the pomelo in dishes like with prawns and braised with abalone. Never waste a fruit that take that long to grow. My family made a dish with the rind but never taste as good as the ones in Hong Kong.

  4. Patty, that’s what I admire about the asian countries. They’re not wasteful , but resourceful about food ingredients and incorporate everything that’s considered edible in their cuisine. The west has a lot to learn in that regard, but I think we’re slowly beginning to catch on.

  5. It’s funny, I never considered pomelos to be an exotic fruit; around here, they’re both cheap and plentiful during the winter, you can get them in most supermarkets, and a lot of people know what they are. Maybe something to do with Philly being a shipping hub? Who knows, but at least I’ve found one fruit I don’t have to be insanely jealous over not having access to!

  6. My grandfather on Kauai used to make a dish out the rind as well. My aunt made it for me once. She dried the rind first to store it. Then later, she soaked in warm water for several hours, then steamed with some kind of shoyu/sesame oil/oyster sauce seasoning. It kind of salty, slightly bitter and citrusy, kind of like dried, salted, li hing lemon peel. It was great with rice.

  7. the jabong is grub as heck they are all over kauii,,,,yummy yummy when it goes in the tummy but u better find a hippie to pick u one thats ripe best fruit ever

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