This American Blogger Built A Career Around Her Love Of Hunting For Durian
While durian is famously known to be an acquired taste even among Southeast Asians, 29-year-old American Lindsay Gasik has built a career around her love for the fruit
According to her blog, Year Of The Durian, Gasik revealed that she smelled her first durian when helping out at a farm wedding in Oregon, United States in 2009. Curiosity led her to buying the fruit immediately, and she has been a durian hunter ever since.
Gasik, along with her husband, set out on a durian adventure in January 2012 "with the goal of eating as many durians as humanly possible while visiting as many countries as we could afford in one year."
Over what the couple called their "Year of the Durian", they trekked through nine countries to learn more about the fruit as well as the people who grew them.
"Along the way, I've come to appreciate the diversity of flavours that durian has depending on where and how it's grown. I've become something of a durian foodie," the blogger wrote.
What started out as writing a blog "for fun" ended up as the start of many friendships. "Other durian lovers wrote to us wanting to know how to incorporate a durian adventure into their trips to Southeast Asia," she said.
"This website is where you'll find your posse of durian fanatics, fruit geeks, horticultural hobbyists, and travelers who love exploring the world through the hunt for durian. Like me," Gasik added.
After years of advising fans of durian through her blog, Gasik has turned it up a notch in order to reach more people. She published a book called 'The Durian Tourist's Guide To Penang' this year.
The book, which can be pre-ordered here, includes a guide to over 25 Penang Durian varieties, information on durian farms and stalls to visit, and stories behind these places and the people behind them.
"The mission of The Penang Durian Guide is to turn you into a durian connoisseur. A connoisseur cares about the whole story. Flavour is the story of a place and it's people and history," she wrote in her blog, adding that, "Through eating delectable, delicious durian, I want you to get to know and to love Penang as a place as intimately as I have over these last 7 years."
Not everyone's a fan of the King of Fruits. 500 people in this Melbourne Uni thought a rotting durian smelled like a gas leak: