A drupe fruit is one that has a fleshy exterior covering a very hard seed usually single called a pit.
Botanically speaking drupes refer to any fleshy fruit having a single hard sit called a pit derived from the ovary of a single flower.
Some drupe fruit examples include:
- Cornelian cherry
- Cornelian cherry
Next, we will discuss all the above-mentioned examples in some detail
DRUPE FRUIT EXAMPLES:
Though most of us consider pistachio as a nut they are rather an iconic drupe fruit example. The fleshy fruit that covers the edible seed is discarded during the harvesting and packaging process. Pistachios belong to a special class of drupes called “culinary nuts” which means is not real nut but considered as one in culinary practice.
Called the “king of fruits” the mango is probably the best known amongst the drupe fruit examples that are mentioned in the list. Native to the Indian subcontinent and grown here for over 4000 years, the mango cultivation has now spread to other parts of East Asia from Bangladesh to Burma and Thailand. The fruit epicarp is a leathery skin that can be peeled off. The seed is very hard in the case of ripened fruits but can be easily cut through in the case of raw and unripe mangoes.
Peached are another drupe fruit example grown in all the temperate regions across the globe. Peaches are sold and consumed raw, canned and also in pies strudels and other desserts. The flowers from which peach fruits are derived are also beautiful and are often grown for ornamental purposes.
Dates are another one-seeded drupe fruit example. The size, shape, taste and amount of flesh all depend on the nature and cultivation of the date palm. A lot of commercially sold dates are previously deseeded for convenience and also to avoid any kind of choking hazards.
The cornelian cherry is another drupe fruit example. A relative of the flowering dogwood, Cornus florida, the cornelian cherry is a native of dry deciduous woodlands in central and southern Europe and western Asia. The cornelian cherry fruit is botanically categorized as a drupe.
Another culinarily significant drupe fruit example is the olive. Used as an addition, especially to continental, the Mediterranean and Italian cuisines, as olives are mainly native to these regions. They are an excellent source of edible Vitamin E and are also used for oil extraction.
Olives mainly come in 2 varieties – black and green. Both varieties have a similar tangy taste but differ in size. Mostly olives are sold canned or preserved and are previously pitted to remove their seed.
Longans are another drupe fruit example belonging to the soapberry family just like the litchi. Similar to litchis they have white translucent flesh and single seed. The only difference is the size since longans are only about 3 centimetres in diameter and the amount of edible mesocarp is also much more minute. Longans are used as a fruit and also used for numerous desserts preparation in southeast Asia.
Another unusual example in the list is walnut is one of the fruits that are considered both nuts and drupes. The shell that we crack to get to the nut is actually the hard seed coat and the entire nut as sold is the pit of the fruit.
Even though the name has a nut because we can extract oil from it, the coconut is actually a drupe fruit example. The fruit has a single seed which is what we usually eat discarding the other layers of the fruit.
While cherries fit the description of fruit, they also belong to a more particular group. Cherries are classed as drupes, a subgenus of the fruit genus. Drupes, also known as stone fruits, have an outer fleshy layer and thin skin and are easily distinguished by the presence of a pit in the middle. These pits (or stones) are the drupe’s unique seed.
Another iconic drupe fruit example plums are considered to be one of the first fruits that were domesticated in Central Asia and Europe. Plum varieties are native to Asia, Europe and North America and are considered to be what we call a warm-weather fruit. Its delectable flesh is considered quite a delicacy and is used in a variety of desserts.
Unlike all the drupe fruit examples discussed above the raspberry is an aggregate drupelet. That means each segment has its very own seed or pit and was formed from the ovary of a single flower.
Nectarines belong to the peach family and are considered to be domesticated in China over 400 years ago. Nectarines have a white, yellow or red with a single hard seed in the middle. They are considered great sources of vitamin A and C.
A summer favourite the litchi is a drupe fruit example native to south and southeast Asia. They grow in bunches and have succulent and sweet white flesh surrounding the hard pit or seed. Unlike most other fruits the skin of the fruit is dry and spiky once it ripens and can be easily peeled off from the smooth flesh.
Coffee beans are another drupe fruit example where the pit or seed is the edible part. Coffee beans inside small coffee berries that look very similar to cherries. The flesh is discarded and the beans are dried, roasted and ground to get the coffee that most of us drink year-round. Sometimes the ground coffee is mixed with something called chicory to enhance the flavour and make it more commercially available
Preferred dried over the ripe variety apricots are the last drupe fruit example that we will discuss. Known for their strange taste and anticarcinogenic properties the bitter kernels of apricots are considered quite a delicacy across the globe. Distinguished by their slightly translucent orangish flesh that looks nearly jelly-like when dried. Most commercially sold dried apricots usually have their stones i.e. pits removed and cut into rings.