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The Secret Of The Durian’s Smell – Filipino Superfoods

  • Is the legend told by the Filipino elders true? Is the secret of the durian’s smell really hidden behind the tale of a curse leveled upon an ungrateful king? Was it really once a smooth-skinned, sweet smelling fruit grown from a love potion?

The Legend Of The Durian

The stories say that an ugly king whose wife ran away was given a love potion by a hermit. The potion was made from the milk of a carabao and the nectar of a rare flower mixed inside the egg of a bird.

The hermit told the king to bury the egg in a garden and give his wife the fruit from the tree that grew. Once she ate the fruit, the queen would fall in love with the ugly king and stop running around.

There was only one condition to all of this: the hermit had to be the guest of honor at the party that would be thrown for the queen after she ate the fruit.

The ugly king did as the hermit instructed. He gave his wandering queen the fruit of the tree that grew from the potion-filled egg. It worked! The queen ate the fruit and fell deeply in love with the ugly king. The king then planned a giant celebration.

But the king forgot his promise to the hermit. He didn’t invite him.

Angry at not being invited to the celebration, the hermit cursed the magic tree. The durian lost its sweet smell and smooth skin. From then on, the durian smelled foul and was covered with thorns.

Is That Really The Secret Of The Durian’s Smell?

Absolutely! Maybe. We could ask Science.

It turns out that Science can’t tell us exactly how the durian got its smell or just why it’s covered with spikes. But Science can tell us why the durian’s smell is the way it is.

Scientists from the German Research Center for Food Chemistry cracked open a bunch of Thai durians and put them under a smell-o-meter. They identified more than 50 different substances in the fruit that have their own unique odors. When combined like they are in the durian, they give it the one-of-a-kind aroma that people love. Or hate.

If I Eat It, Will I Fall In Love?

Yes! Probably. Maybe. Who knows?

What you will get if you eat durian is a whole bunch of nutrition. Those golden globs of creamy goodness are packed with nutrients and vitamins.

Just 100-grams of fresh durian provides:

  • 33% of your daily batch of Vitamin C
  • 24% of  Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine)
  • 15% of Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)
  • 23% of your daily Copper
  • 14% of your daily Maganese

Eating durian will also gain you bragging rights for having faced down and bitten the world’s most famous stinky fruit. So that might help your love life. Or not.

What will definitely help your love life is casually dropping the fact that you eat Filipino Superfoods like the durian. That’s gauranteed to make you look smart and sexy.

Thanks for reading and if you have any thoughts about the durian, drop a comment in to the comment box below.

Information in this post was gathered from various sources including the food blog Pepper.Ph, and


photo credits: Beautiful woman with grimace beacuse of bad smell. Isolated on white.  via photopin (license)| Durian by SodanieChea via / CC BY |  umseas DNA lab via photopin (license) | wuestenigel Heart shape foil wrapped chocolate via photopin (license)



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