Friday, 5 April 2013

World Most Expensive ...Durian!

Recently, I have been seeing food news about the World Most Expensive Fresh Water Fish call Wild Empurau (Indo Mahseer), costing customers anything in the range of SGD300-400 per kg.

Then sometime back, we have heard about the World Most Expensive Coffee, Kopi Luwak or the Asian Palm Civet-Cat-Pooed Coffee. Ranging from SGD300-SGD600 per kg.

This record was broken by the dung coffee from the world largest land Mammal, the Asian Elephant, Thai Elephant to be exact.

The specialty brew of Thai Arabica cost USD700-1100 per kg. This came about when a Canadian Coffee Expert Blake Dinkin discovered that the Elephant has a natural Roaster which can break down the protein enzyme of the Arabica, making it bitter-less and smooth. This coffee is currently available only at the Anantara Golden Triangle resort, Maldives and recently in Abu Dhabi at USD50 per cup.

The process of how the picker ascertain whether the coffee berries is good enough, is when they pop one into their mouth to sample. It takes about 10,000 beans to produce 1kg of roasted Black Ivory Coffee. Given this the picker must be fully appreciative of the Elephant's diet. :)

Coffee beans picked from elephant dung. (Paula Bronstein/Getty Images)

Not to be beaten, the Civet cat fought back and found themselves an UpMart place to sell their Pooed-Coffee. Founder Charles Henry Harrod would be kicking in the grave if he knew this is happening to Harrods Branding, that now their are selling Packaged Pooed Coffee.

The most expensive range comes from Harrods's Terra Nera ‘Kopi Luwak’ in a 24-carat- Gold Plated sachet, available from price range starting from USD 225 to USD10,910.

World's most expensive Kopi Luwak Coffee now on sale at Harrods

But the World Most Expensive Food item is still the undisputed White Alba Truffles at USD330,000 for 3.3 pounds, own by HK Billionaire Stanley Ho. Incidentally the Truffles was discovered when female pigs dig the earth underneath the Oak Trees in Piedmont, Italy, looking for scent of the male pig’s sex pheromones.

World’s most expensive truffle

Now after telling you so much about Fish, Coffee and Truffles, it is time to share with you the World Most Expensive Durian is .... not your Musang King or Black Thorn or any other cultivars.

The Durian Urban Legend has it that long long time ago, Durians were the favorite Fruit for the Kingdom of Animals: the primates, the big cats, Rhinoceros, Tapirs, wild boar, pigs, snakes, scorpions, squirrels, and of course the Elephants.

Frugivorus animals are reported to love Durians. According to the Thai maxim:
“First, the elephant shakes the tree to bring down the fruit. After the elephant noses open the fruit with its tusks, the tiger fights him for the fruit. Rhinoceros, wild pig, tapir, deer, monkey, ant, and beetle follow the tiger. Humans must be very quick to get the Durian”.

Everyone loves the durians. Each has their own ways of eating the Durians.

Squirrels loevs to eat the furit while it is hanging on the branch. Dun believe?

Orangutans use tools such as sticks to help knock durians from the trees. They make leaf gloves to protect themselves when consuming prickly foods. Once open, the Orangutans will discard the skin, eat the flesh, and spit out the seeds, acting as major seed dispersers for this fruit.

While a Tapir would spat out the durian seeds after eating the flesh, thereafter helping to propagate the seeds throughout the jungle.

It has been said that Tigers would press open the durians with their weight and paws top down and lick off the flesh of the Durians totally clean and amazingly place the seeds near into the husk.
Not sure why though.

Tiger video - Panthera tigris - su08b - ARKive

Nothing beats the largest fellow in the Jungle: Elephants

They swallow the whole durian into their stomach! Seriously, how is that possible?

It is said that the Elephant, would roll the wild durians with leaves until it is like a cotton ball then eating it whole. And that's not the end of it, they pooed out the whole fruit too.

Although many reports mentioned that because the Elephant is an inefficient digester of food, therefore the durian was expelled.

 I choose to believe otherwise. More so it is their way of cleansing their digestive tract. The prickly fruit actually helps to pick out those stuff that has been in the stomach and brings it out together. like sometimes the cats n dogs would go to a plan by the roadside and ingest to expel the indigestible foods. likewise, the durians are used in this manner,

By chance, the Orang Asli (natives of the Jungle) saw his and pick it up. Having seen the durian is in tact, thus opening it up and enjoy the goodness.

Now, it may be true that the Elephant's gigantic stomach does break down the protein enzymes to rid of the bitterness in coffee. But what about Durians?

Well according to a report in 2010, a group of aphrodisiac driven timber tycoons in Johor, this type of Elephant Dung Durians are the real natural Viagra. And it is so difficult to obtain one, the price of the durian is set at SGD400 a piece, making it the most expensive Durian. The Orang Asli would track and follow the elephant after it has eaten the durian, for up to 4 hours, they will wait patiently for it to be out process.  Then collect and sell to these hard core durian lovers.

Prioir to this report, Elephant Dung Durians are not new, these are common in the areas of Sumatra Peninsula, Borneo, Thailand and even Vietnam, way back in the 70s. back then the durians were sold for SGD25 a piece, which was also known as Elephant Ganja.

Here is the Elephant Dung Durian. Wonder how good it taste.

Shall we go for any expedition to look for the Elephant Dung Durian?

Have a nice day,

1 comment:

  1. Tommy, where did you get this picture of the durian tahi gajah? Do you know someone who has eaten it?