During my research trip to Medellin to become acclimated with the city, I was offered an opportunity to take a market tour inside of La Minorista. I’ve never taken a fruit tour before, but since I’m a self-proclaimed professional eater, I figured, why not? At the very least, I would discover new fruit and eat healthy at the same time. La Minorista has a no frills structure, but the culinary options inside are electric!
We passed by a variety of stalls selling customary produce you can find anywhere such as peppers, potatoes, & pineapples. The fun started when we got to the fruit. My time in Brazil introduced me to some of the most exotic.
It was eye opening to discover Colombia can bring its own flavor to the table. I started off the fruit extravaganza with:
Lulo – a citrus like fruit which reminds me of a kiwi, but not as sweet. Lulo is also known to have health benefits such as improved immune system, protect against certain cancers and lower cholesterol.
Granadilla – a type of passion fruit that has a sweet flavor. It’s said to be good for newborn mothers and for pregnant woman, because it helps facilitate the production of breast milk.
Curuba – has a mild unique taste of its own and is known as banana passionfruit. Its benefit is a powerful antioxidant, which helps prevent harm from pollution and smoking.
Mamoncillo – was one of my favorite with its sweet taste, accompanied by a flavorful texture that surrounds the seed. You have to work to get all the meat off the seed, but it’s worth the effort. The health benefits are preventing constipation and urinary stones.
Sapote – was another fruit high on my list. At first glance it looks like a mini coconut. However its skin is easy to peel back. As you peel back the skin a pumpkin orange meat covers its seed. Now it’s time to dig in and enjoy as much as you can. The health benefits are a good source of fiber and it helps lower cholesterol.
Uchuva – was my favorite fruit. Small sweet and easy to consume. It was like eating a bag of almonds or walnuts. You could easily eat 20 to 30 at a time. The health benefits, they are anti-inflammatory.
The tour didn’t end with the fruit. La Minorista is an enormous market and there was more to see. The upstairs area is filled with countless stalls, but the downstairs area is a totally different experience. The protein is sold downstairs and whatever your palate desires you can find it here. The fish section was filled with a variety of fresh fish and the huge catfish stuck out to me the most.
The butcher stalls sell cut meats and you can see the staff carving out cow ribs on the spot. The pig section was fascinating and kind of disturbing. Pigs aren’t the prettiest animals to look at in the first place and to see them skinned, hanging on hooks took away my pork appetite. In all, the La Minorista tour was a pleasant surprise and I definitely recommend visiting. I enjoyed getting a chance to see how food commerce is conducted in Medellin with the everyday people.
If you’re interesting in taking a fruit tour you can contact Palenque Tours, http://palenque-tours-colombia.com/
Also, if you plan on visiting Medellin and want to get more info about this beautiful city visit Medellin’s official guide: http://medellin.travel/