The Mangosteen is a round, purple fruit slightly smaller than a tennis ball, but it has absolutely nothing to do with a mango—a mangosteen is not known to taste anything like mangoes, nor does it look like one. The fruit originated in Malaysia and grows on trees in warm climates, but it is difficult to grow due to its temperamental nature. It has a sweet taste while being slightly sour at the same time.
The mangosteen grows on small evergreen trees in Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia and southern India.
To open it, simply cut right around the middle of the fruit and twist open. The rind is inedible, and the fruit comes in the form of variously sized wedged segments, similar to garlic, but the largest mangosteen wedge may hold a solitary, bitter seed that is not usually eaten. The number of segments usually varies from four to eight, which is matched by the number of points on the protrusion from the underside of the fruit; therefore, it is easy to know how many pieces of fruit are inside before opening it. Usually, the fruit can be kept at room temperature for up to one week.