The Kiwiberry


Welcome to another foodie post based on my dad’s fruit purchasing adventures! They don’t happen all too frequently, and I don’t always write about them (last time it was the mangosteen I didn’t write about), but now and then there are a few wacky fruits that appear.

I really like berries — from strawberries to raspberries, to boysenberries. But wait, is that a real fruit at all? For anyone that knows me though, blueberries are my personal favourite and my eyes will light up when I see a box of them in the fridge. I will go out of my way to get Dryck Blåbär from IKEA when we’re there, though not quite as good as their Saft Blåbär. Blueberries a native of Sweden? Now I know why I like IKEA so much.

Getting to the meat of it...

But I digress, how interesting it was to learn that there was something called the kiwiberry, a perennial vine native to Japan, Korea, Northern China and Russian Siberia. They are shaped like grapes, but if I didn’t know better would have thought it to be a unripened grape tomato. The skin is tougher than that of grapes, and resembles more that of a tomato.

The skin is usually green or brownish, but can have a reddish appearance which I can imagine would make it all the more confusing. They taste exactly like kiwi fruit though, yet require no peeling of the skin since it’s not hairy. Though I know some people that eat the skin anyway…

When I first saw this phenomenon, I asked my father if it was a baby kiwi fruit, but it is in fact a cousin of the traditional fruit we know and love. The kiwiberry is sweeter and has a more intense flavour, or so I hear since I have nothing to directly compare it to at the moment. They are apparently full of fibre and Vitamin C though, so a great diet supplement for anyone.

Convenient and tasty, I could get used to this fruit. Apparently more farmers are growing it now, so maybe this is why its availability is increasing? I certainly have never seen this fruit sold in fruit markets before, but maybe you have? Maybe we’ll soon start to see the delectable kiwiberry appear in more places.

Photo by Simon A, on Flickr.