Jul 6, 2023
Tropical fruits like Lychee have that distinct sweet flavor that takes a while to get used to. But once you have it, you’ll crave it like crazy. Unfortunately, it’s hard to get it fresh in the US. So, what’s the next best thing? You either buy freeze-dried lychee or make your own.
Lychee is a small, tropical fruit in Asia with bumpy, knobby, brittle skin. Its reddish skin gives the lychee its fond nickname, “alligator strawberry.” The skin is very thin and easy to peel, especially when the fruit is ripe. Once you break the skin, you get this juicy, translucent flesh in size. Depending on the variety, the flesh is either white or pale pink. The flesh’s texture is like a grape but has a firmer bite.
But enough of the physical looks. The flavor of the flesh is what people are most intrigued about.
People describe lychee as having a sweet, slightly tart flavor. What makes it different is the floral undertones that people often tie to jasmine or rose. These notes don’t overpower the flavor but rather enhance the sweet tartness of the fruit.
Its floral sweetness can surprise you at first. But you get used to the taste after a while, especially when the juices spill in your mouth with each chew. Its exotic flavor makes it one of the highly sought-after fruits in Asia.
Be careful with the seed, though. Soft and juicy the flesh may be, lychee has a thick seed. It’s harder than the seed of the jackfruit and mainly inedible.
Aside from giving an exotic flavor to smoothies and shakes, lychee also has many health benefits.
It’s a rich source of vitamin C and polyphenol (oligonol). Polyphenol is an antioxidant that’s under study for potential cancer-fighting abilities. Also, according to experts, a cup of lychee a day can help boost your immune system.
But since lychee is a seasonal fruit in Asia, it’s hard to get it all year round. Also, it’s highly perishable. Exposed to heat, lychee can easily dry up and mold. In the fridge, it can only last for 3-7 days before spoiling. The best option is for you to get freeze-dried lychee.
Freeze-dried lychee is fruit preserved through the freeze-drying process. It undergoes deep freezing in a vacuum chamber to draw out moisture. As the machine builds up a vacuum, the ice crystals sublimate. Meaning from ice, moisture directly changes to vapor without passing through the liquid phase.
Since low temperature is used, the flesh becomes light, dry, airy, and crunchy. You won’t get that yellowish, chewy product that you usually get from a dehydrator.
So far there are only a few places where you can buy freeze-dried lychee online.
Telyra started out as Tealux in 2010. They officially changed their name to Tealyra in 2014 but maintained the same vision: to give you unique blends of the finest quality teas and ingredients. You’ll be surprised, why does a tea shop offer freeze-dried lychee? That’s because they also desire to give healthy options to support everyone with their health goals.
Their freeze-dried lychee is gluten-free and GMO-free. Tealyra offers two package sizes. One is the 2 oz (56 g) that costs $6.50. The other is 4 oz (112 g) for $11.50. But if you subscribe to their newsletter, you can get a 20% discount on your first order.
You have the option of using PayPal or your credit card. They accept Visa, Mastercard, American Express, Discover, JBC, and Diners Club. Once you fulfil your order, they ship it through USPS or UPS. Your shipping option and location depend on how many days it will arrive.
So far, no one has given feedback on how the freeze-dried lychees are.
Uncle Henry’s mission is to make farmers’ market products that are of the highest quality available to you.
Their freeze-dried lychee is made using 100% fruit with no sugar added. It’s non-GMO, vegan, and tastes so good for a very long time.
The product comes in a 2.8 oz (80 g) resealable Kraft bag protected with a sturdy box. It costs $14.47, which you can pay Through American Express, Apple Pay, Diner’s Club, Discover, Mastercard, Visa, and PayPal. Shipping will depend on your location, but orders above $25 will get free shipping.
Unfortunately, as of the posting of this blog, they’re sold from the store. But you can choose to get notified when the next batch becomes available.
Just like with Tealyra, there are no customer reviews for this product. If you happen to try it out, please let us know what it was like for you.
We know, isn’t it weird that most of the shops offering freeze-dried lychee are specialty tea shops? We could only guess the reason why, but we’re happy they find ways to make it available for us!
Surai Spices offer freeze-dried lychee in two sizes. One is in a 1 oz packet that costs $7.00. The other is in a 1 cup jar that will cost you $10.00. You can pay through PayPal, ShopPay, and Google Pay to make it easy for you.
Although Surai Spices offer shipping, you can also have it available for pickup. The freeze-dried lychee is usually available within 24 hours, and you can get it at 943 4th Avenue South.
As with other shops, there are no reviews about Suraj Spices & Teas freeze-dried lychee.
There are many ways for you to freeze dry lychee in your food.
You can grind it into a powder and add it to your cakes and bread. You can break it into small pieces and use it to top ice cream. They also give great fruity flavor to granolas and teas.
Rehydrating freeze-dried lychee is as simple as soaking it in cold water for 3-5 minutes. However, you won’t get the same fresh, juicy crunch as its counterparts.
Also, you don’t have to stick to water alone. You can use your tea so that it not only gives your tea flavor but takes in the flavor of your tea as well. You can use almost any flavored liquid that you want. But if you’re adding it to drinks or smoothies, no need to rehydrate. Add some water because it will take in moisture from your mix.
Freeze-dried lychee is a fun, satisfying way of enjoying its fruity flavor. True that there’s none of that satisfying spurt of floral juice. But there’s an explosion of lychee flavor as it melts on your tongue while you chew.
You can buy them in several stores. We didn’t include the other shops because they are overseas. It’s rare to find it because it’s seasonal and highly perishable. So far, these are the only shops we found that cater to the US. If you find more, do let us know in the comment section.
Where will you buy your freeze-dried lychee? Share with us why!
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