Saturday, January 19, 2013

Nam Nam (Cynometra cauliflora)

 A few weeks ago, I posted some pictures of passion fruit bloom and asked to take a guess what kind of fruits were in our yellow basket next to the passion fruits. So today I will give you the answer and it is nam nam fruit. Nam nam fruit is native to Malaysia and also locally known as 'katak puru' (sadly some kind of a toad) due to its shape. But instead of a toad to me it kind of resemble like a brain. The kidney shape nam nam fruit skin is rough and mature fruit is not that big just fit the palm of my hand. Green fruit is sour and ripe fruit is sweet sour. If you are a fan of green mango like me, you will definitely like nam nam fruit as well. Yummy addition in 'sambal' belacan or dip into 'rojak' sauce. I like to add the fruit into my 'masak lemak cili api' (Malaysia yellow curry), guarantee you have second serving. How to pick ripe nam nam fruit? Yellow colour and when you shake the fruit you can feel that the seed rattle or loose from the flesh inside and when you pluck the fruit it easily came off no resistant. The fruit has large seed and yellow flesh.
 Nam nam tree comparing with other native tropical fruit tree is relatively small. Surprisingly the plant can produce fruit even in shaded condition. I think this must be a useful adaptation since it is rather a small tree that will nestled under the canopy of big tall tree if growing wild in the virgin forest. As I remembered our nam nam plant has been fruiting since I was still in secondary school. Back then, I did not really appreciate the tree much due to the fruit appearance but I remembered my father tried to coax me to it eat when I went back during holiday while studying in Japan. One of my sisters like this fruit very much since small, she has very high tolerance for sour food.
Nam nam plant blossoms.
Even fruiting close to the base of the plant. The nam nam fruit just beginning to develop.
Amazing how the fruit attach on the tree bark/branch.
 I did not realised we had so many self-seeded nam nam seedlings until last week when we were mowing the lawn. Hopefully when I have time, will pot up these precious little babies. Although it is a native to us, it is not an easily plant to obtain due to lack popularity. Sadly this fruit has now become very rare, you won't see it readily selling at any market. Especially now not many my generation knew about this fruit. 
Fruits all year round. I am addicted to the fruit. I can harvest some fruits every fortnightly. 

How do you enjoy your nam nam?

23 comments:

Stiletto said...

An interesting fruit. I've read about it but strangely, I have not eaten this fruit nor seen the tree before. It would be great to plant one as the tree looks great.

nadia rashid said...

sedap nyer nam nam or buah katak puru..sbb badan nyer timbul2 gerutu..rasa masam manis..lama dah tak makan ni

cikmanggis said...

Kt kg cm kelantan dorang pangging katak puru.My emak bila ckp nam nam dia tk kenal.
Byk kenangan ttg buah nam nam ni.Dulu masa darjah satu pi sekolah jln kaki.Tepi jln dekat sekolah kebangsaan Langgar kb ada pokok nam nam.Time tu masih tk faham apa apa.Ada percubaan nk petik buah nam nam nenek yg buat ketuk sabut kelapa....kena herdik lari lintang pukang.Hehe...nakal.

cikmanggis said...

Kt kg cm kelantan dorang pangging katak puru.My emak bila ckp nam nam dia tk kenal.
Byk kenangan ttg buah nam nam ni.Dulu masa darjah satu pi sekolah jln kaki.Tepi jln dekat sekolah kebangsaan Langgar kb ada pokok nam nam.Time tu masih tk faham apa apa.Ada percubaan nk petik buah nam nam nenek yg buat ketuk sabut kelapa....kena herdik lari lintang pukang.Hehe...nakal.

cookingvarieties said...

hi diana, the nam nam looks so appetizing- i have never tried this before- next time i see it in the market, guess i will surely buy. thanks, i learn something on nam nam today :)

Ummu Madihah said...

Salam Diana,

Mak Aji baru tanam anak pokok ni, masih kecil lagi sbb teringat zaman budak2 selalu makan buah ni yg ditanam nenek di laman rumahnya. Di potong2, cicah colek cuka, belacan dan cili api, cukup sedap!! Dah kecur air liur!

Stephanie said...

I think I have seen those flowers on the trunks like that before. Now I know there will be fruit like these. Gosh they really look like brains haha... Btw I would have 'like' this as well ;-) Have a wonderful weekend!

Mark Willis said...

Very interesting. I have never heard of this fruit before. Since the tree is quite rare these days and you have lots of little seedlings maybe you should set up a Mail Order supply arrangement!

Sue Garrett said...

Fascinating tree and fruit. It is also strange how our taste buds change as we grow older.

rainfield61 said...

It is really rare to be known.

But no more a stranger after this.

DANI said...

That's a new tree for me :) A beautiful tree. You are lucky to have so many fruits :) Have a nice sunday, Diana !

~Gardener on Sherlock Street said...

Never heard of this fruit before. Sounds great especially fruiting all year. Thank you for sharing. I always learn something new on your blog.

Nor Azlina Yusof said...

Kt rmh mak saya byk..kalu buat jeruk sedap...lepas ni blh cuba taruk dlm msk lemak pulak

lena said...

i'm learning a new fruit today. looks like the small bittergourd. I tak pernah jumpa buah nam2 dekat sini. BUt the way you describe it reminds me of buah belimbi:)..yang itu pun tak pernah makan..also sourish, orang cakap very nice in assam dish:)

MaDiHaA a.k.a Ratna said...

akak pernah makan sekali je nam nam ni.. & itulah pertama kali jumpa masa akak balik ke kelantan rumah bapa saudara hubby.. buahnya memang sedap dimakan dengan kuah rojak.. tp kami masa tu makan collek cicah dengan kicap yang dicampur dengan ramuan lagi seperti belacan, gula, asam jawa & cili padi... fuhh.. mmg sedap sungguh!

de engineur said...

I'm residing in Sabah and this is my first sighting of this nam nam fruit.

I wonder how it taste (although you've hinted of green mango)

kitchen flavours said...

Hi Diana,
This is a new one for me, have not heard of this fruit before! I don't mind having this in sambal belacan, makan with masak lemak! Looks like the cocoa fruit at a glance!

Malay-Kadazan girl said...

Stiletto~The trees does form a nice canopy and since it is not a big tree it will fit in any terrace house.

Nadia~Bekas orang perantauan baru dapat setelah sekian lama teringin.

Cikmanggis~Memori masa budak-budak memang nostalgia...hehehe...kalau nampak buah bentuk macam ni mesti budak-budak terasa nak petik.

Cookingvarieties~ Buah nadir kita ni. Hope you will find some.

Ummu Madihah~Dekat rumah ni sampai luar pagar rumah pun ada beberapa pokok nam nam naik mungkin dari biji si tupai bawa lari. Memang sedap dicicah macam tu :).

Stephanie~ Yeah small brain...hehehe..

Mark~Good idea hahaha will probably set up a Mail Order supply arrangement.

Sue~Yes the taste buds change as we grow.

Rainfield61~ Hopefully it will be more known to younger generations.

DANI~ We are really pampered children. So many fruits from our parents labor.

GoSS~Many natives does fruit all year for other creatures that like the fruits too.

Nor Azlina Yusof~ Tak pernah saya cuba buat jeruk lagi. Nak cuba juga bila banyak buahnya.

Lena~Dulu banyak pokoknya tapi dah pupus sebab kurang orang tanam. Oh speaking of buah belimbi keluar air liur hehehe...

MaDiHaA~Syok makan buah ni ramai-ramai kan berebut colek hehehe...

De Engineur~When its ripe sweet sourish. The flesh is not fibrous nor watery like bambangan.

Joyce~Buahnya kecil sahaja tak besar macam buah cocoa.

Iskandar said...

Hi there, and Salam Ramadhan.

I came across your blog doing a google search for namnam trees. I hope you read this and can manage to find some time to reply. I have been trying to get a hold of some seedlings for a couple of years now...most elusive tree this is!

I remember them from my childhood in Malacca, and have been wanting to plant some in our country home in PD. I was wondering if there was some way I could get some of the seedlings from you.

Chuan Kiat Paparagro said...

Hi... where can I find this fruit tree?

Malay-Kadazan girl said...

Hi Iskandar and Chuan Kiat Paparagro,

You can take a look at Kebun Bahagia Bersama blog or send the tukang kebun an email (kebunkmg@gmail.com) regarding seedlings.

Malay-Kadazan girl said...

Hi Iskandar and Chuan Kiat Paparagro,

You can take a look at Kebun Bahagia Bersama blog or send the tukang kebun an email (kebunkmg@gmail.com) regarding seedlings.

Iskandar said...

Hi KG, thanks for the tip. Will try your leads. Happy Gardening!