What is a durian? Some people haven't even seen how it actually looks, not to mention how it tastes. My friends are too scared to try it because of the rumors of the strong odor. I personally don't feel that it smells, so I've learned to enjoy it. Let me tell you all about what is a durian and why it's my favorite fruit.

Don't judge a book by its cover. 

Durians are the "King of Fruits." It's encased in an exoskeleton with spikes. Bu,t once you take your butcher knife and praw the fruit open, the inside is like a peeled orange.

Yes, durians do have quite a strong smell that some may find unpleasant, but it's powerful odor brings out a unique taste. People already have an impression by the smell, even before they've tasted it. So don't let the smell stop you. 

There will be pieces of durian that are wrapped up by their big brown seeds. The texture is soft, and it has flesh that is a creamy yellow to white to orange color depending on the type and where it was produced. 

It's nothing like what you expected. 

You really can't guess how a durian tastes if you've never tasted one before. Western fruits tend to have distinct flavors: sweet, tangy, juicy, sour. But for durian, it's like a creamy explosion of indecipherable flavors. It's sweet and savory with a creamy dimension. The flesh is like "a rich custard flavored with almonds."

It's hard to put into words, but if you must, durian tastes like "subtle hints of chives mixed with powdered sugar.... diced garlic and caramel mixed into whipped cream." Others describe it as a little "almondy" and "having a whiff of alcohol about it." This is a hard to imagine description. Just chill, and give it a try and you will see for yourself. 

Make sure you pick the right one. 

As with all fruits, there's always the not-so-ripe, just right, and the overripe. This will also lead to how your durian meat is, there's the more "wet" and the more "dry."

My mother's advice is to choose the rounder ones because the ones with a flat side means there isn't any fruit on that side. Go for the yellower/browner shells, not the green ones. 

#SpoonFact: Do you know that durians are frozen and then shipped to the United States, so the ones you buy here aren't 100% fresh? I guess we'll have to plan a trip to try the best ones! 

Durian is made into all kinds of dessert.

I grew up in a family that is obsessed with durian. We like to eat it in all of its forms.

Durian-filled cream puffs are one of our family favorites that we order from Hong-Van's Bakery in San Jose, California. 

Mochi is always a crowd favorite. Durian mochi? That's gold. You can get your hands on some at Phoenix, a growing chain in Los Angeles and Southern California.  

ice, cream, ice cream
Anna Yang

We all scream for ice cream — Durian ice cream. It's quite a twist, but I think more places should offer it. Get a scoop at Polly Anne's Ice Cream in the Sunset District of San Francisco. 

Of course, I'm biased because I've acquired a taste for durian and it's one of my favorite fruits. But if you can brave through the smell, you'll get a one-of-a-kind experience.