Confused American tries to eat a rambutan

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Image adapted from: @hommiepen

If we hadn’t been gorging on local fruits like durian and rambutan since our toddling days, we might be just as puzzled as non-Asians who are only seeing fruits like these for the first time. That’s the only explanation we could think of when Netflix decided that rambutans could pass off as an alien fruit in “Another Life” a few months back.

And now, the spotlight is back on rambutans for the very same reason – because someone from a non-tropical country who thought they were weird and alien-looking was attempting to eat it for the first time.

Malaysians left in stitches at the misguided attempt

Tweet (1)
Image adapted from: @sabrinemra

On Monday (2 Dec), Twitter user @sabrinemra shared a TikTok video of an American teenager named Gavin Smith (@hommiepen on TikTok), where Smith was trying a rambutan. Her post quickly blew up on the popular social media platform, garnering over 10,000 retweets and 8,000 likes, because Malaysians and other rambutan-loving Asians were amused at how much difficulty he faced. 

Tries to peel skin, ends up shaving rambutan “hair”

The 28-second video started off with Smith placing the rambutan into frame and expressing his confusion at the exotic fruit, asking, “What is this?” 

The video then cuts to him trying to peel the fruit using a fruit peeler, which of course, scattered the rambutan’s “hairs” all over the chopping board, as many sharp-eyed netizens noticed.

Rambutan (1)
Image adapted from: @hommiepen

After struggling with the peeler, he swops it out with a kitchen knife instead to tries to slice it open. Smith couldn’t hide his surprise, exclaiming, “woah, that is weird”, once the rambutan flesh was revealed, possibly because it looked like an egg encased in a hairy red shell. 

Rambutan (2)
The milky, almost silver colour of the rambutan flesh must have surprised him
Image adapted from: @hommiepen

The video ends just as he was trying to figure out if he had cut through the seed. From the use of tools to the confused commentary, it reminded us of our Biology practical lessons, when we were asked to dissect an animal. Except in this case, it was a rambutan. #SayNoToAnimalCruelty, guys. 

You can watch the full video here.

Malaysians share a knowing laugh 

And because Malaysians have a wicked sense of humour, Twitter user @anisbjb replied to @sabrinemra’s subsequent tweet about how someone pointed out that rambutans look like a “vegan hard-boiled egg”, saying “now the rambutan’s bald [laughter]” in Malay. 

Tweet (2)
Image adapted from: @sabrinemra

Tweet (3)
Image adapted from: @anisbjb

Ikram Khairi who goes by the Twitter handle @ikramkhairi5 then chipped in and said that Malaysians can easily eat 10 rambutans in a minute while Smith could only manage 1.

Tweet (4)
Image adapted from: @ikramkhairi_

TikToker tries dragon fruit and longan too

It seems that Smith has a penchant for trying out new fruits – and rambutans weren’t actually his first choice. That honour goes to the dragon fruit, and he documented his first taste of the fruit too. 

Image adapted from: @hommiepen

That video began in similar fashion with him placing the dragon fruit into the camera’s view before saying, “what the heck is this?” He then scooped out a huge portion to try before switching to the front camera to film his bewildered reaction.

Smith's reaction
Image adapted from: @hommiepen

Well, it’s safe to say that Smith is not a fan of dragon fruit. 

In the last leg of Smith’s tropical fruit adventure, for now at least, is longan. This time round, the TikToker actually peeled the fruit just like how any Malaysian would’ve – with our fingers. 

Image adapted from: @hommiepen

After getting the fruit out of its shell without a hitch, he popped it into his mouth to give it a try. His verdict for these “berries” – as he called them: “It doesn’t taste bad”. Our verdict on his fruit-peeling skills: commendable effort.

Non-locals amazed at tropical fruits

As Malaysians, we’ve seen our fair share of videos on non-locals trying out durians for the first time. And it’s always a funny sight to watch. But besides the thorny fruit, we have a whole arsenal of tropical fruits that would confuse and amaze those from the other side of the world. 

Even if they are a little odd-looking, they’re some of the best fruits around – a majority of Malaysians would proudly vouch for this! And now that Smith has already checked off rambutans, longans, and dragon fruits, maybe he’d be interested in trying mangosteen next. 

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