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Thursday, December 16, 2010


Rhubarb in Boston.Image via Wikipedia
I mentioned rhubarb and tamarillos in my post about trifle, and someone asked me what they are...
Rhubarb is a leafy vegetable with thick fleshy stalks. The leaves would make you very sick if you ate them, but the stalks are delicious cut into 2cm lengths and cooked with some sugar (rhubarb is very sour.) People often combine it with apple for pies, or use it with breakfast cereal. It's really good with custard or crumble, and my mother makes rhubarb trifle, which I love. I've only ever seen canned rhubarb in Japan, but I've heard of people growing it here. It's very easy to grow.

Red and yellow tamarillos (tree tomatos). Pict...Image via WikipediaTamarillos (sometimes called tree tomatoes) are a fruit about the size and shape of a kiwi fruit, with smooth dark red skin. Inside is yellow flesh, and dark red seeds like large tomato seeds. A few hardy people eat them without sugar, but I can't, because they are both sour and a little bitter. But if you peel and slice them, then sprinkle lots of sugar over and let them sit a few hours (macerate?) they become wonderful.  You can also boil them with a tiny amount of water and a lot of sugar.

The flavor is very rich and strong. The only thing I can think of to compare them with is cassis, but the flavor is quite different. If you somehow get hold of some tamarillos, they are difficult to peel unless you pour boiling water over them, just like as you do for tomatoes.

Sadly I've never seen them in Japan.

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1 comment:

  1. Thanks! Very interesting!!! I searched it in detail and found Rhubarb jam is available in Nagano (in Japan)!