Physalis fruit, also called Cape Gooseberries, are luscious round yellow fruits encased in a papery wrapper that makes them look like miniature Chinese lanterns. You can eat the fruit raw, poach them or use them to decorate everything from a cupcake to a pavlova to a cheesecake.
– Physalis are a small shiny yellow fruit with a strong citrus flavour.
– Dip the fruit in melted chocolate (try not to get chocolate on the wrapper encasing the fruit) and leave on a baking grid to dry. Serve as a sweet surprise at the end of a meal.
– Add physalis fruit to a melon and orange salad. Remove the physalis fruit from its wrapper and wipe with damp paper towel if the fruit is sticky. Cut the fruit in half. Peel and slice a ripe mango and a juicy orange, add to a mixture of lime and orange juice and garnish with the physalis fruit.
– Use physalis fruit to decorate cupcakes – they are beautiful sliced in half and perched on top of vanilla buttercream icing (add a few drops of orange colouring to the icing).
– Make a pavlova (basically a thick round of baked meringue). Top with sweetened whipped cream and decorate with blueberries and physalis still in their wrappers.
– Poach physallis fruit (without their wrappers) in a sugar syrup which you have flavoured with vanilla. Serve over labneh and sprinkle on toasted pistachios for a middle-eastern breakfast treat. (To make a sugar syrup, place equal quantities of water and sugar together in a saucepan, bring to the boil and cook until the bubbles get larger and the mixture becomes syrupy.)
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