Ramadan Series: Tropical Fruit Salad with Iced Mint Tea Syrup

Walking down Kuala Lumpur’s premier food street, Jalan Alor, basking in the  mouth-watering aromas emanating from food being prepared by vendors, my eyes fell upon a cart splashed with colors of the rainbow. As I approached it, it dawned upon me that this was an epicurean’s haven; a grand display of Malaysia’s finest offerings. The cart was adorned with the colors of the rainbow in the form of exotic fruits. The deep burgundy of the dragon-fruits, the parrot green colored rather large guavas, to the aubergine tinted mangosteens donning green caps and the hedgehog looking rambutans; all in their finest livery waiting to be plucked. Like a child in a toy shop with sparkling eyes, I took my time in choosing the best of the lot. All these gems required special treatment; a creation to match their exoticism.

Tropical Fruit Salad with Iced Mint Tea Syrup

This thought bothered me for hours; what would I do with all this fruit? Ideas came and went but nothing seemed to excite me. Until I randomly remembered a trip to Borough market in London with my aunt a few years ago while I was studying there. She had taken hours to pick fresh fruit for a dinner she was having one balmy summer evening. She wanted to make a dessert that was not heavy rather would help to bring the mercury down and tantalize the palate of her guests. Hence this recipe was born; tropical fruit salad with iced mint tea. At first thought, it seemed absurd but once complete it was a treat for all the senses. Taking my cue, I set out to create my version of the fruit salad.

Tropical Fruit Salad with Iced Mint Tea Syrup

Ingredients:

  • 1 Dragonfruit
  • 1 large green guava
  • 1/2 pink papaya
  • 2 red apples
  • 2 mangosteens
  • 6 rambutans
  • 1 starfruit
  • 1 cup lychees, pitted
  • 2 bananas
  • 1/2 cup fresh mint leaves
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 tsp honey
  • Juice of one lime

Preparation:

  • Place water in a saucepan and add the mint. Bring it to a boil and then let it simmer for 5 minutes
  • Add the honey and stir for another minute. If you want the tea to be sweeter, add some more honey
  • Let the tea cool for 15 minutes. Once cooled pour into a container with a lid and refrigerate for at least 2-3 hours or till required. Do not discard the mint leaves, let them infuse while the tea chills
  • Meanwhile chop all the fruit except the dragon fruit and mix together in a bowl. (Do not add the dragon fruit at this point as it leaves color). Leave some starfruit to garnish at the end as well
  • Right before serving, add lime juice to the fruits and stir well
  • Pour in the iced mint tea and mix together to infuse the fruit salad
  • Garnish with the remaining starfruit and chopped dragon fruit

Tropical Fruit Salad with Iced Mint Tea Syrup

The differing flavors of the fruits infused with the sweetness of honey, the pungent lime and the soothing mint creates a refreshing fruit salad. A perfect dish to be served in the dead of summer when the mercury soars through the roof and a mouth-watering way to open your fast as well. A fruit salad helps to keep the freshness of the fruit intact, letting all the delicious flavors seep through. A blissful way to spend the summers; eating a bowl of tropical fruit salad with iced mint tea.

Tropical Fruit Salad with Iced Mint Tea Syrup