It’s peak season for these immigrants from the Andes, so make the most of them.
Here’s something I bet you didn’t know: the word “tamarillo” was dreamed up in the 1960s here in New Zealand, and is a combination of two words, the M ori “tama”, meaning leader, and the Spanish “amarillo”, meaning yellow (in spite of the fact that the most prevalent variety these days is a deep, dark red colour). Tamarillos are originally from the Andes region in South America, and they do jolly well here too in our (sometimes) subtropical climate. They are at their peak at the moment, so make the most of them. A clafoutis is a lovely old-school French pudding that is usually made with black cherries. Chances are you won’t use all of the tamarillos in the clafoutis, so you can have the leftover ones on your porridge the next morning.
CLAFOUTIS WITH POACHED TAMARILLOS
Prep time: 15 minutes Cook time: 1 hour 30 minutes Serves: 4
FOR THE POACHED TAMARILLOS
250g brown sugar
2 sticks cinnamon
2 tsp vanilla essence Zest and juice of 2 lemons 250ml water
Dash of brandy, if you fancy
FOR THE CLAFOUTIS
1 tbsp butter
125g plain flour
Zest of 1 lemon
Icing sugar and runny cream, to serve
Preheat your oven to 180C.
Cut the tamarillos not quite in half – from the end lengthways up to the stem. Combine with all other ingredients in a roasting pan and bake gently for at least 50 minutes, until the tamarillos are soft and starting to fall apart. Remove and allow to cool.
For the clafoutis, use the butter to grease a ceramic dish. Combine the sugar, flour and lemon zest in a mixing bowl before whisking in the eggs and gradually adding the milk to create a smooth batter. Pour into the greased dish and spoon the tamarillos in over the top. Bake in the preheated oven for about 35 minutes, until the batter has risen well and is just cooked through but is still slightly custardy. Take care not to let it overcook. Dust liberally with icing sugar and serve while still warm, with some runny cream and the leftover poaching syrup on the side.