Boiled Seeds: Artocarpus CamansiPosted: 22 June 2011
YOU KNOW HOW SOME NUTS ARE ACTUALLY SEEDS AND HOW SOME SEEDS ARE ACTUALLY FRUITS? For example, candle nuts (buah keras) and nutmegs (buah pala) are actually seeds. Meanwhile, coriander seeds (ketumbar) are in fact dried fruits. I once asked my friend the difference between nuts and seeds, he said: “Doesn’t matter which one is which, they got mixed anyway in your stomach when you eat them.” I quite agree with him…
By the way, this post is about a fruit that many people don’t know about. The Melanau calls it ‘tupang’ and the Iban calls it ‘buah pulor’. In English it is called ‘breadnut’. I had to go through great ordeal just to get this fruit name in English. I searched each and every species of artocarpus (which I obtained by googling ‘breadfruit’) before coming to know the scientific name for breadnut, that is ‘artocarpus camansi’. Only the seeds of tupang are consumed.
KNOW YOUR TUPANG
- It looks like ‘durian’, as you can see, but the color is much paler. The thorns are not as sharp and pointy like durian’s.
- The comparison is made between tupang and durian because durian is more popular. However, there is another similar fruit that resembles tupang. Notice the similarity of the shape of the leaves and the fruit; it can be easily mistaken for breadfruit (‘sukun’ or artocarpus altilis).
- Tupang is also called ‘sukun with seeds’ because of their striking similarity, hence the name ‘breadnut’ and ‘breadfruit’. Sukun does not have seeds. It is propagated by root cutting. On the other hand, tupang is bred by its seeds. Sukun also have smoother skin, thus can be distinguished from durian and tupang at first glance.
- Tupang tree can grow this tall after ten years.
- It becomes soft and mushy when it ripens. The picture shows the inside of a ‘tupang’. It smells like old rubber shoes that have been kept forever in some box.
- Unlike durian, you don’t have to wait for it to fall down from the tree in order to eat them. You can pick it using a pole if you want after seeing one that is not too young and is big enough. You can wait for it to fall if you want, but its mushiness (it is very mushy if you waited it out for too long, even mushier than the one in picture above) and smell makes the retrieving process a little bit challenging.
- Seeds of durian, jackfruit (‘nangka’), ‘cempedak’ can also be boiled and eaten. I never tasted boiled durian seeds and nangka seeds (I never liked jackfruit) but in my opinion, tupang’s seed is superior to boiled cempedak seeds as it does not leave weird aftertaste in your mouth. Cempedak makes your mouth feels like you have been drinking oil. Very oily and uncomfortable.
- Young cempedak and tupang can be treated like vegetable. It can be made into a dish that is made by sautéing shallot, chilies, and shrimp paste. The young seeds together with the fruit flesh that are still stuck to the seeds are then added, followed by water. Usually, water spinach (‘kangkung’) is cooked this way.
- The difference between the mentioned fruits.
Do you know there is a similar fruit to tupang that is called ‘terap’ that has even fouler smell than durian (I like durian but not terap). TunDr. Mahathir once joked about terap when he came to Sarawak long time ago. He said, we also have terap in Peninsula Malaysia but we call them ‘Padang Terap’. He said terap is delicious. One thing about terap is the seeds can also be consumed. It is also eaten like durian, we only eat the flesh covering the seeds. Instead of boiling it, terap seeds are toasted (or stir-fried in a wok without any oil). The smell of the toasted seeds is as unbearable as its flesh.
There you go. Almost everything you need to know about tupang. Useless facts? Well, we’ll never know when your knowledge about tupang will be the difference between life and death to you someday (probably never).
Stay curios. 🙂
These pictures are not mine. They were taken from the following websites:
Breadfruit. (June 13, 2011). In Wikipedia. Retrieved on June 18, 2011 from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Breadfruit
Breadfruit (Artocarpus altilis). (2010). In Artocarpus Pages. Retrieved on June 18, 2011 from http://groups.plantbiology.northwestern.edu/artocarpus/breadfruit.html
Durian – The King of Fruit. (2011). In Tropical Fruit. Retrieved on June 18, 2011 from http://tropical-fruits.biz/