A Guide to Choosing the Freshest Fruits

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Fruits are an important part of our food intake, and thankfully here in Malaysia we are able to enjoy a great variety of them. Things can get complicated when trying to select the best of the best. Here is a brief guide on choosing the freshest fruits, so you never have to worry about overripe ones.

1) Apples

It’s always the deepest coloured, firmest and shiniest apples that will be the best choice. Definitely avoid bruised apples, or those that have tan or brown marks on the stem or end. A pleasant scent is also an indication that the apple will taste good. Can you blame Snow White for falling for an apple related trap? Sometimes they just look so tempting.

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2) Grapes

Nobody likes sour grapes unless it’s in liquid form in a bottle of wine. Therefore, choosing the sweetest grapes is often of paramount importance for those who enjoy the fruit. You can tell a lot by the colour. For green grapes, go for those that have a yellowish tint to it. Red grapes should be an intense red. The same goes for black, the darker, the better. Grapes should also be firm to the touch.

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3) Lemons

Sometimes you have to feel your way through a situation – that’s certainly the case when picking out lemons. Now, that doesn’t mean a big squeeze. We don’t want you getting in trouble for ruining fresh produce before it’s purchased. Just gently press the lemon with your thumb. If it’s soft, that means it will be great for juicing.

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4) Durian

In true Malaysian fashion, we couldn’t leave our King of Fruits off this list. Luckily durian experts have shared the tricks of the trade so you can select the best thorny fruit for yourself. Durians and smells go hand in hand, but you really need to sniff the fruit at close range to ascertain if it’s ripe. If you get no smell, it’s not ripe. If the smell overwhelms you, it’s too ripe. Shape is important too, so go for oblong or oval durians.

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5) Bananas

Bananas should be solid yellow with brown flecks. If you don’t want to eat them right away, you can also go for the greenish ones. These potassium rich fruits tend to ripen quite fast, so it’s alright to choose fruits that are a little green. You would also do well to choose bananas that are thick in the middle.

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6) Strawberries

As we’ve seen, colour is very important when it comes to fruit selection. Strawberries are no exception. You want to get the reddest berries possible, as the lack of colour means it wasn’t picked when it was perfectly ripe. Unlike other fruits on this list though, size and shape don’t matter.

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7) Rambutan

Our tropical climate is perfect for growing rambutans, which is why they’re a favourite here. The rambutan you pick should be firm and without any bruises, so do a thorough inspection before you buy any. A rich red colour is your best bet, as those with yellow colourings might indicate fruit that is overripe. Brown coloured rambutans should be avoided.

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8) Oranges

Some people are of the opinion that smaller oranges tend to be juicier, so you can consider this the next time you are shopping for oranges. Once again, smelling the fruit will help here, as ripe oranges will have a pleasant aroma to it. While scratches are alright, be sure that the fruit is firm to the touch. You could also squeeze the orange to determine if it is soft or firm.

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9) Mangoes

Here, it’s best to forget about colour. Other than the visible change from green to yellow/orange, mangoes should be judged by touch, much like lemons. If it’s soft, it’s an indication that it’s quite ripe. Mangoes also tend to give off a lovely fragrant aroma when they are at peak ripeness.

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 10) Watermelons

Due to their size, choosing a watermelon may seem intimidating, but it doesn’t have to be. In a grocery store, you wouldn’t have the option to ask someone to help you pick out the best fruit – so here are some ways you can do it yourself. First, make sure the watermelon is heavy. This is a good indication of the amount of juice it contains. Then turn it over and thump it. If it feels hollow, that’s a good sign.

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