tasty tamarillos on Flickr.
“Solanum betaceum is a small tree or shrub in the flowering plant family Solanaceae. It is best known as the species that bears the tamarillo, an egg-shaped edible fruit. Other names include tree tomato and tomate de árbol. In Indonesia, it is known as terong Belanda or Dutch eggplant… The tamarillo is native to the Andes of Peru, Chile, Ecuador, Colombia, and Bolivia.
“The fruit is eaten by scooping the flesh from a halved fruit, but in New Zealand children palpate the ripe fruit until it is soft then bite off the stem end and squeeze the flesh directly into their mouths. When lightly sugared and cooled, the flesh makes a refreshing breakfast dish.
“They give a unique flavor when made into a compote, or added to stews (e.g. Boeuf Bourguignon), hollandaise, chutneys, and curries. They are also tasty and decorative in, for example, radicchio salads. Appetizing desserts using this fruit include bavarois and combined with apples in a strudel.
“In Colombia, Ecuador and Sumatra, fresh tamarillos are frequently blended together with water and sugar to make a juice. It is also available as a commercially pasteurized purée.
“The flesh of the tamarillo is tangy and mildly sweet, and may be compared to kiwifruit, tomato, or passion fruit. The skin and the flesh near it have an unpleasant bitter taste, and usually aren’t eaten raw.”