fruit

Unlike Japan’s other expensive melons, you can use this cast-iron one to brew tea

Unlike Japan’s other expensive melons, you can use this cast-iron one to brew tea

You may have heard horror stories about melons in Japan costing 10,000 yen (US $99), but they’re really more the exception than the rule. For their personal use, most people usually choose much cheaper varieties, and the premium stuff only gets purchased as a gift to be given on special occasions.

The price those 10,000-yen melons command has as much to do with their airbrushed centerfold-like unblemished looks as it does their flavor. Sometimes, it feels like a waste to cut them open to get to the edible parts inside, almost as though you’re destroying a piece of art that just happens to look like fruit.

Maybe that’s why someone made just that, with this melon-shaped tea pot.

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Watermelon bagels arrive in Japan, then in our bellies【Taste test】

Watermelon bagels arrive in Japan, then in our bellies【Taste test】

There’s a lot that I love about summer. The additional hours of daylight, awesome fireworks festivals, and the chance to wear a summer kimono are all big plusses in my book.

Still, even I have to admit Japan can get uncomfortably hot at this time of year. A cold beer or cup of sake are both refreshing ways of beating the heat, but there are times when chilled alcohol isn’t an option, such as when I have non-drinking related work to do and/or am already hung-over.

So in order to stay both sober and cool, I eat as much watermelon as I can every summer. And while I don’t think Japanese chain Bagel & Bagel designed their new watermelon bagel just for me, I figured I’m still in the target demographic, and decided to try it out.

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Vegetables are smarter than fruits: Three high IQ Japanese veggies

Vegetables are smarter than fruits: Three high IQ Japanese veggies

I’ve lived among Japanese fruits and vegetables for 17 years and one thing I can say for sure is that vegetables are waaay smarter than fruits.

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“Dr. Fruit” or “How Japan Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Peel”

“Dr. Fruit” or “How Japan Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Peel”

On more than one occasion, when the family would settle down for a nice bowl of grapes, I would do as usual and pop one in my mouth. Almost assuredly my wife’s face would contort into a grimace that would make you think I just licked a dog’s butt. This would soon be followed by a lecture on how the pesticides used on it seep into the skin and cannot be washed off along with pleas to stop this barbaric act.

However, I figured if I haven’t died or gotten so much as a tummy ache thus far, it’s probably okay. Nevertheless, every once and a while my wife would try to slip me a peeled grape to convert me, only to have my face contort into the shape of having licked a dogs butt.

The whole point of all this dog-butt talk is that my wife is not at all alone among Japanese people who refuse to eat the skins of certain fruits. However, in recent years, this trend has been changing according to a survey by Tropicana Japan and Dr. “Fruit” Motohashi.
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Ensure your fruit never rolls away with pentagon oranges

Ensure your fruit never rolls away with pentagon oranges

From creepy pears in the shape of a baby to heart-shaped lemons and watermelons, Japan has the market cornered on unusually shaped fruit. Now we’ve come across a five-sided orange produced in Ehime Prefecture. What’s more, these pointed fruits are supposed to help you pass your school exams!

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Six awesome ways to peel a Japanese tangerine (no, seriously) 【Videos】

Six awesome ways to peel a Japanese tangerine (no, seriously) 【Videos】

In the age of iPhones, head-mounted displays and smartpens, it’s easy to forget that people used to amuse themselves in far simpler ways. Back in the school lunch room, for example, without a shiny new pocket gadget to show off, the coolest kid was the one who perform tricks with what he had, be it making milk come out of his nose and compacting whole sandwiches into his shout hole in one go, or showing off his ninja orange-peeling skills.

It should be no surprise, then, that the country that gave us origami and art on the tip of a pencil should also be home to some incredibly dexterous and creative mikan (Japanese tangerine) peelers we’ve ever seen, turning mere fruit skin into everything from watch straps to trotting horses and flying sparrows.

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Freaky gourmet: Mango yogurt noodles, anyone!?

Freaky gourmet: Mango yogurt noodles, anyone!?

During the height of summer, we’ve been known to plonk ourselves down in front our home-made air conditioner with a pile of sliced watermelon or even chilled soba noodles and mentsuyu dipping sauce as a way of keeping cool while engaging in our favourite pastime of filling our faces. But we never imagined for a second that someone would put noodles, yoghurt and fruit together in one dish.

Tokyo and Osaka-based noodle chain Tsurutontan, specialists in udon wheat-flour noodle dishes, is currently offering patrons something rather tropical with its Mango Yogurt Udon. The very thought of eating a cold, sweet version of one of our favourite kinds of noodle at once excited us and made us feel a little bit queasy, so we sent one of our bravest reporters over to try it out. Find out what they thought after the jump.

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Suika Bar vs watermelon: which popsicle will win?

Suika Bar vs watermelon: which popsicle will win?

It’s summer in Japan and that means everyone is on the lookout for ways to cool down and cope with the stifling heat. For many Japanese, relief comes in popsicle form, and one of the most popular and refreshing is the Suika Bar, literally “watermelon bar”, which featured in our recent Japanese convenience store ice-cream ranking.

But what happens when you have a craving for the crunchy watermelon treat and the blistering walk to the shops is too much to bear? Our Japanese reporter recently faced this dilemma and tried to recreate the popsicle with just the fruit instead. How will the humble frozen watermelon measure up next to its manufactured cousin? We bring you the answer to this summer’s most pressing question after the break.

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Make Citrus Your Bitch With the Citrus Sprayer

Make Citrus Your Bitch With the Citrus Sprayer

Nothing livens up a salad or a roast chicken breast like a bit of fresh lemon, but isn’t it a pain to have to do all that cutting and squeezing? Don’t you just wish you could grab a lemon off the tree and pump it dry on the spot?

Well, now you can with Citrus Sprayer, a clever little utensil that turns fresh citrus fruit into a natural spray bottle!

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The Most Pornographic Persimmon You Have Ever Seen (and Other Sexy Fruit)

The Most Pornographic Persimmon You Have Ever Seen (and Other Sexy Fruit)

Fruit gives us a lot of reasons to associate it with sex. Just think of all the adjectives you can use to describe it: round, plump, wet, juicy, firm… Come on, it’s called the “Forbidden Fruit” for a reason.

If this wasn’t enough, sometimes fruit even shapes itself to stimulate our senses, and I’m not talking about bananas and melons. Just take a look at this unbelievably erotic persimmon found by one Japanese internet user late last week.

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