Have you ever heard of a Peruvian ground cherry? You might not recognise the name, but you have certainly seen and even tasted them, but you know them as Cape gooseberries!
These small yellow fruits began in South America also known as Incan berries and were brought to England in 1774 and then to South Africa, especially the Cape area in the 1800s, which is how they got their new name. You may also be surprised to learn that the Cape gooseberry plant’s closest relative is something called a tomatillo: a small green tomato-like berry used in Mexican cuisine.
The Cape gooseberry is one of the world’s top super foods, They are high in phosphorous, vitamin A, C, B1, B2 and one of the highest sources of B6. They are also extremely high in protein for fruit, so your immune system likes them too. Here is just one way to use this lovely fruit while it’s in season.
Apple, blueberry and Cape gooseberry crumble
This dessert crumble is full of fresh fruit and not too much sugar! Crumbles are simple to prepare, so this is a lovely choice for entertaining.
- 4 tbsp dried
- 100 g cape gooseberries – without their papery skins
- 1 kg dessert apples, such as Granny Smith
- 4 tbsp orange juice
- 1 tbsp Honey
- 125 g plain flour
- 50 g chopped walnuts or hazelnuts
- 50 g rolled oats
- 100 g unsalted butter, diced
- 55 g coconut sugar
- grated zest of 1 orange
- Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F)
- Peel and core the apples, then cut them into thick wedges. Put them into a saucepan with the orange juice and blueberries/cranberries, now cover and simmer over a low heat for 10 minutes until the apples start to soften.
- Add the honey and whole cape gooseberries to the apples and stir, then transfer the fruit filling to a 1.5 litre deep baking dish.
- In a separate mixing bowl, rub the butter and flour gently together until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.
- Stir in the chopped nuts, oats, sugar and orange zest, and mix in about 1 tbsp water to make a rough and crumbly mixture.
- Spread the crumble topping gently and evenly over the fruit – remember NOT to press it down into the fruit!
- Bake for 20–25 minutes until the topping is golden brown and the fruit juice is bubbling up round the edges.