#191 Balimbing

Balimbing (Carambola or starfruit, botanical name ‘Averrhoa carambola’) is a tropical fruit found in many Southeast Asian countries such as Indonesia, India and Sri Lanka.

In the Philippines, the balimbing has earned an iconic status and the noun ‘balimbing’ in Filipino also refers to the political Janus Face, the “turncoat” or “many-faced’ whose loyalties are dubious. The fruit has five angles or points and when sliced a cross-section looks like a star, hence the name star fruit.

Balimbing as a fruit is versatile and serves as a tasty garnish to salads and snazzy fruit cocktails, and could also be used in jams and fruit preserves. It is best to consume balimbing when ripe. An unripe fruit will appear green, while a ripe one has bright yellow with a light shade of green. An overripe fruit will appear yellow with brown spots. In the US balimbing is called carambola, while in India the fruit is called kamranga or kamrakh.

Mabuhay ang balimbing (not the political species)!

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