Thursday, September 10, 2009

Friday Shootout: Aged and weathered

This is a green jackfruit. Why am I showing a green jack fruit when the topic is aged and weathered. I have to show the contrast of a weathered jackfruit shown in the photo below. Then you will know what I mean. I took other photos of the trees with the jackfruit at the compound of the Malaysian Railway in a small town. These fruits can go up to thirty kilos and two feet long.

This brown aged ugly looking jackfruit turns me off. But then, even a beautiful green one turns me off. I am sadly allergic to jackfruit. The aroma is too strong and over powering that it gives me a headache. While it is fragrant to most people in South East Asia, it smells like paint or strong nail polish and gives me a headache. When Mum and dad buy jackfruit and her cousin chempedat, they get me a bunch of rambutans. My kid siblings didn't understand why I get this special treatment and come and ask me for some. I don't have to explain how I fought off five younger siblings by running from one room to another with my own bunch of rambutans. (when you click on the link on my other blog, you will see a photo of this hairy fruit.)

Actually when the vendor told me the brown jackfruit was still very good, I suspect she is lying. I have never seem people selling browned jackfruit. You cut open the jackfruit by slitting from top to bottom. First you oil your knife and you wear groves. Otherwise the sap sticks to your hands and it is very difficult to remove. Before my family knew this, my mum had to use kerosene to clean the knife and her hands. Once you slit open the jackfruit, you dig into the body and grab out the edible fruits.

There are many fruits inside, and I am told they taste very sweet and have the texture of a semi ripe paw paw or papaya. In Singapore, some vendors sell them like a kebab. The Vietnamese dry them and sell them as jackfruit chips. The Thais put them in a can with syrup. Some people cook unripe jackfruits in a curry, my fruit. Mr. W. cooks his in a prawn curry. You may roast the seeds, and they make a beautiful nutty snack. Now matter how well they dress them, I still won't eat them.

In NTU, where I lived for many years as a faculty wife and the unofficial secretary of the residents' gardening club, there are many abandoned jackfruit trees, previously part of the university was a fruit garden. Since no body attends to the fruit trees, bees sting the young fruits, and the mature fruits become useless. You still get some workers trying their luck and cut away the bad part of the fruit.

This is an old cinema in a small town in West Malaysia built in the 1950s. It used to screen Chinese Movies from Hong Kong and Indian Movies from Bollywood. Sadly, it met its demise with the videos. Cheap pirated videos were rented for $1 to $2 sealed the coffin. The building is empty.

This old milk bottle is near to the Railway station at Kluang, West Malaysia. The first time I saw it was almost thirty years ago when I visited my husband's family. This July, when I visited, the bottle is still there. It looks as if nobody gave it a coat of new paint.

I was waiting for the dentist appointment in Kluang. My aged and weathered teeth had not been to a dentist for three years, and the dentist said," Your teeth is very very dirty, you must have them cleaned regularly," I muttered something and had my eyes shut tight." You scared of coming to the dentist?" He must be thinking," You aged and weathered woman, you are still scared of the dentist?" The whole of my appointment, I had my eyes shut tight, pretending not to hear him. I was more worried about my aged and weathered wallet, besides my pearls are fine, he didn't find no cavities in them, and all thirty two pearlies are mine. LOL.

I looked out of the dentist's window, there were these buildings, or the back of these buildings. I couldn't believe my eyes. They looked like some of the buildings in my home town Sibu. I remember going to my friend's house along Ramin Way, and we used to go up and down in those spiral stairs in the mid-1960s. We had to do this in secret because it was a three storeys building. Very tall building at that time. These buildings must have been built at the same time, and never had a new white wash.

My big brother in law was very good to me when I told him I was taking photos for my blog. He took me on a reconnaissance on his little motor bike round his little town. I haven't been on a motor bike since my last year of high school, and with my camera in one hand, it wasn't a very good ride as it was very hot and humid and most of the road was not paved with asphalt. Never the less, we took some very good photos. We went past this house where there was a fruit he wanted to show me. We saw another fruit that we didn't know, and I was more curious with the fence.

This building is the local drug rehab building. Doesn't look very appealing for the inmates. This building was built in the early British Colonial era and had seen better days.

This is at another fruit shop. The dragon fruits would be past their "sell by date." Small town, they don't pride themselves and they should at least throw them out. The link I showed on textile, is a immature fruit and flower I saw at a farm. I shall show you on another post how a nice fruit should look like.

This is my lot for this challenge. Do enjoy sights and smells of the tropics.

Assignment by: Pauline http://mytownshootout.blogspot.comom/


aurbie said...

Oh, I love your photos and your wonderful commentary. I especially liked the part about the dentist. I am like you, I keep my eyes shut!

I especially love the colorful old buildings.

The fruit does look odd. Do you have durians? When I was on assignments in Thailand, I loved to eat durians.

Beautiful, beautiful photos of aged and weather things.

Thank you for sharing your part of the world.

Unknown said...

I have never heard of jackfruit or seen one. very interesting. love the dentist story also.

great shots for this weeks assignment!!

Mary said...

I'd never thought of food as aged and weathered. I like the building and your story about the dentist.

Ann, Chen Jie Xue 陈洁雪 said...


Aged food, may be it is a New Zealand thing.

Not something I like to eat though. From a Chinese background, I like my food fresh. But here, they like their meat and steak aged. The steak turn brown and unappetizing. They sell them as "aged" for tenderness. They hang their birds and ducks for a few days.

There is another food: corn is soaked in a sack in a creek until they almost rotten.

Unknown said...

Nice post Ann, I LOVE Jackfruit, we can eat them by the kilos :P
Aw...who loves a trip to a dentist. Years ago, I went to a local dentist and asked he he could put me to sleep temp..while he did what he had to for my teeth, BUT he turned out to be so good...

Cynthia L. H. said...

Wonderful, educational post!
Thank you!

Kerry said...

I've never had jack fruit, but it was fun to hear you describe them! And that dental appointment: haha...whoops I have one coming up in a few weeks, better not laugh.

Sara Diana said...

Fantastic photos and I loved reading about the Jackfruits, I have never heard of them before but they sound really good. I dont like the brown ones too much!

NanU said...

Excellent! I love your story about the dentist, and also all the fruits.

RedLan said...

We have durian fruits here too. But I love jackfruits. The 3rd photo is so unique. I love it.

J9 said...

That dragon fruit looks horrible! would anyone buy these?

Gordon said...

Ann. Very good! I have never seen a jackfruit, and after your description, don't know if I want to. Very educational. I am glad to know of your food and customs.
Did you recognize Auckland in the pictures?

GingerV said...

You can not believe how much I enjoyed this entry. and the next two also... as I rush from blog to blog trying to read and comment on as many as possible I seldom read 3 at one site. that old building has a look of a railroad station, is it possilbe it was one. the photo with the houses across the street and the multi colored roofs is really great for showing this area...
we have jackfruit here in Brasil but I don't think it is called that - Camillo says he hates the smell and if you can get past the smell you will love the taste. it is only sold along the road, not in the supermarkets... smells too bad. good shoot out.

Zaroga said...

A wonderful post, Ann. Loved each photo and the commentary.

You asked about my name and my brothers' and sister's names. This post of mine explains it:

Zaroga said...

Ann, our children's names are Sonja and David. Sonja hates that we spelled her name with a j :-) Her middle name is Yvette and David's middle name is Phillip. So we did not go too extreme with their names :-)