My sweet, lovely durian

Who loves you, durian? Gloppy yellow pods, fragrant with the promise of stinky ripeness, prized by tropical tigers, banned from Singapore subways: I love you!

Durian + iced black coffee = one of my Top 3 favorite breakfasts of all time, along with smoked haddock with poached eggs and mooncakes with black coffee. The smell of durian brings back memories of still, hot days in Vietnam, when we’d pry at the spiky armor with our hands, scoop out the pods and slurp the stinking goodness off the slick pits, sticky strings running ripe down our arms.

Durian goodness came to me today courtesy of Lisa Asagi, who manages the KCC Farmers’ Market and saw my tweet begging for durian. Here’s Lisa with today’s bounty.

Tonight the scent of durian perfumes the house. That smell has been compared to rotting eggs, sweaty gym socks, or as my sister says, “an open sewage main.” My durian’s been exiled to the basement, actually, so what wafts powerfully upstairs is also wafting into the neighbors’ houses and a good chunk of my dead-end in Liliha (for which, if you’re within smelling vicinity, I’m sorry).

The people at Wailea Ag in Hamakua told Lisa it will be ready tomorrow, so that’s what I’m waiting for. Meanwhile, if you love durian like me and want a taste of my 7.4 pounds of custardy bliss, leave a comment or DM me @nonstopmari on Twitter. And if you don’t, I’ll understand. No one around me wants any, and they’re all very adamant about that.

Until the morn, durian…

P.S. First on the list for my lovely durian is Melissa Chang, shown here handing me dessert from today’s Punahou Carnival. Melissa was my partner in contraband the last time I had durian, in Singapore three years ago, hunkered on the sidewalk outside a YMCA where it was banned.