Fresh lychees are nothing like
the canned lychees sold in stores
(or served for dessert in Asian restaurants.)
Fresh lychees (now in season at gourmet markets)
are round, rough and leathery on the outside,
but once cracked open, reveal a succulent,
juicy grapelike flesh with an intense perfume,
and the sweet flavor of strawberry, pear and watermelon.
They're wonderful in fruit salads, sea food dishes,
or just plain on top of vanilla ice cream.
Mixologists are always blending the juice
and purée in exotic summertime cocktails.
Medicinally, lychees are rich in vitamin-C
and a popular ingredient in lip balms.