Thursday, 6 May 2010

You say tomato, I say...Caqui?

My children were pretty disgusted when I gave them what appeared to be a chopped tomato as their after-supper treat. It was, in fact, a Caqui, and an exemplary one at that. It had been specially selected for me by the disbelieving stall owner at the feira when I told him I'd never eaten one.

I was instructed not to put my dense, shiny, red orb in the fridge under any circumstances, and to eat it 24 hours later, when he deemed it would be perfect. And so there I was, alone at the table, my children long since having excused themselves without bestowing upon theirs a single exploratory lick.

Inside, the fruit looked like a tomato without the seedy bit. Its flesh had the same texture of a perfectly ripe pear, neither slippy or grainy. The skin, also pear-ish, had a bite to it. It didn't have any particular flavour or aroma. Tastewise it simply registered as sweet. Almost sickly. The skin was like toffee. It was pretty much on a par with eating white sugar, which is too bad for my children because they would have loved it! For my part it was okay, but I couldn't help feeling it was just a sin in fruit form.

Trusty Wikipedia informs me, however, that caqui is low in calories (around 80 per 100 grams) and full of vitamins, calcium, iron and proteins. There is apparently a less sweet version of the fruit called caqui-chocolate, which has a more orange hue. Both types are abundant in Brazil, having been introduced by Japanese immigrants around 1916.

And that, my friends, is all I, or the world's free encyclopedia, have to say about the caqui.


  1. I do enjoy a caqui now and again. Your kids will totally drink it as a juice! Even picky eater Luka will drink that one. Good choice for your start. My first trip to the feira, I bought a caqui and thought they were weird Brazilian tomatoes. I was schooled once I got home lol

  2. Caroline Green7 May 2010 at 01:27

    In the US they call them persimmons. I've never had one, but you can find them in supermarkets (especially in NYC where they cater to many different cultures.) Here's a recipe idea for you: