Durian [Door-ee-uhn]: This larger-than-life fruit of the Malaysian tree can weigh up to 10 pounds, has a brownish-green semihard shell covered with thick spikes and is slightly larger than a football.
So starts the durian entree in my trusty Food Lovers Companion. The book goes on to describe this notorious fruit's nauseating smell, noting its contraband status in many hotels and airlines in Asia. I've been scanning the Internet for descriptions of the odor. Almonds (maybe), turpentine (there is a certain petroleum-like volatility to the odor), rotten onions (yes!) and dirty feet (no way) are listed often.
However you describe it, it's pretty intense, and it's also a component of the Brass Monkey ($7.50) a smoothie served at the Vspot Vegan Cafe. They also toss banana and coconut water in the blender before giving the thing a whirl and the results are ... eye opening.
If you don't want a smoothie, you can buy frozen durian at many Asian groceries in Dallas. A lady at the Vspot told me they buy theirs already segmented at Hong Kong Market (9780 Walnut St.), and I saw whole durian firsthand at the Hiep Thai Market while working on my review of My Lan.
The next time your office refrigerator is overdue for a clean and you want to push things over the edge, just tuck a custardy segment of durian in between that half-spent pizza box, and the plastic takeout tray of greasy lo mein. Your office manager will call the cleaning crew the very next day. I promise.
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