PASSIONFRUIT lovers can look forward to an early taste this season with sweet and aromatic Aussie passionfruit in peak season from mid November to April this year. Grower reports show that warmer conditions with limited rain is seeing plenty of plump and juicy fruit already dotting the vines.
Full-flavoured and in peak season throughout summer, Aussie passionfruit is the ideal finishing touch for a range of sweet and savoury dishes. As well as being naturally sweet, it packs a nutritional punch, providing a dose of vitamin C and fibre, while also being low in kilojoules.
“We’ll be busy collecting fresh passionfruit by hand in November and December. Once purple passionfruit is ripe it pops off the vines and onto the ground, then we collect it as soon as possible to prevent sunburn and ensure freshness,” says Kaye Ziser, a third generation farmer from the Sunshine Coast in QLD.
The Zisers, a husband and wife team, are one of the 190 Australian passionfruit growers who work hard throughout the year to deliver top quality fruit. Kaye says that she chose to grow passionfruit as she loves the taste, and it adds aroma, colour and a burst of flavour to a dish.
“It’s lovely whipped up in a healthy smoothie or used as a cereal topper. If you have a sweet tooth, it works well as a tasty finishing touch for ice-cream, soufflé and cheesecake.”
Sydney-based food stylist and passionate cook, Janet Mitchell, agrees that Aussie passionfruit makes the perfect finishing touch on a number of dishes and can transform an ordinary dish into something special.
“The tanginess of fresh Aussie passionfruit cuts through the sweetness in a dessert and provides layers of contrasting flavour. The Australian favourite, pavlova, just wouldn’t be the same without the sweet and tangy taste of fresh local passionfruit.
“You can marry passionfruit up with virtually any fruit available, in addition to baked cakes, biscuits, scones, mousses, puddings, cold desserts. The list is endless.”
Janet has developed a Tangy Passionfruit Sauce recipe, which can be used to transform ordinary dishes into mouthwatering masterpieces. You can put some passion in your dishes with her delicious ideas:
BRIGHT BREAKFAST: Top thick cut fruit toast with ricotta, banana and a drizzle of fresh passionfruit to create an impressive breakfast to kick start the day.
DELICIOUS DIPS: Serve crispy fried choux pastry with melted chocolate and Tangy Passionfruit Sauce as a side dip to create crispy churros with an exotic twist.
DELIGHTFUL DESSERT: Layer meringues, greek yoghurt and passionfruit sauce in a glass serving dish or cup. Top with fresh passionfruit to create a passionate take on eton mess, that is full of contrasting textures and flavours.