Red tamarillos, oranges and green kiwifruit are "traffic light" fruits that help to control good health and brighten winter days.
They are not only colourful but delicious and packed with vitamin C.
The navel orange that grows so well in New Zealand's temperate climate is one of the best-loved varieties for eating.
It is distinguished by its "navel" at one end. Popular because of their rich flavour and brightly coloured pulp, navels are also easy to peel and segment.
Spritzing the juice from navel oranges over chicken, fish, grilled meat, beans, brussels sprouts and cabbage adds zing, and is particularly good if followed by a drop or two of good extra virgin olive oil and freshly ground black pepper.
Tamarillos may be expensive this season, but a few go a long way. Raw or cooked, tamarillos add colour and flavour to casseroles, sauces, icecream and crumbles. Or try serving them with blue cheese as a nibble with drinks.
Sliced tamarillo and whipped cream sandwiched in a chocolate sponge is a treat. Or use one or two in a trifle, diced over a pizza, or pan-fried with bacon for breakfast.
Kiwifruit are an inexpensive means of gaining your required amount of vitamin C and fibre for the day.
They're a great breakfast and after-school snack but can also be dressed up for dinner parties.
Pop slices between meringues or in eclairs, together with whipped cream, a little finely grated orange rind and a dash of orange liqueur; or top creamy cheesecakes with slices and little balls of kiwifruit, then finely drizzle with a little melted chocolate.
ORANGE PANNA COTTA WITH TAMARILLO JELLY & KIWIFRUIT COULIS
This panna cotta is a great dessert for dinner parties, as it can be prepared several days in advance and stored in the refrigerator.
tsp powdered gelatine
1 Tbsp caster sugar
cup cranberry drink
2-3 tamarillos, peeled and sliced
Orange panna cotta:
2 tsp powdered gelatine
2 Tbsp water
1 cups cream
2 Tbsp sugar
Finely grated rind of 1 orange
tsp vanilla essence
2 or 3 green kiwifruit, peeled and sliced
Pinch of sugar
Soak the gelatine and caster sugar in the cranberry drink for a few minutes. Dissolve the gelatine over a low heat or in the microwave, then allow to cool.
Lightly oil 6 half-cup moulds. Place a slice of tamarillo in the base of each mould. Pour in enough gelatine mixture to just cover the tamarillo. Push down any slices that rise to the top. Chill until set.
Meanwhile, prepare the panna cotta. Soften the gelatine in the water for 5 minutes.
Place the cream, milk, sugar, orange rind and vanilla essence in a saucepan and bring to the boil. Whisk the softened gelatine into the hot milk mixture. Remove from the heat and cool. Pour evenly into the moulds over the set tamarillo jelly. Refrigerate until firm.
To make the coulis, puree the kiwifruit briefly, then sieve to remove the seeds. Sweeten to taste.
To remove from the mould, tip each panna cotta on its side and run a small knife around the top edge of the mould. Turn on to six serving plates. Spoon a little coulis on to each plate. Serves 6.
BAKED ORANGE CHICKEN
8 skinned chicken thigh cutlets
Finely grated rind of 1 large New Zealand navel orange
cup orange juice
3 Tbsp each: extra virgin olive oil, sweet chilli sauce, Dijon mustard
1 Tbsp cornflour
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
Trim the cutlets, if necessary. Place in a plastic bag.
Whisk the remaining ingredients together until well mixed. Pour over the chicken. Move the portions around so they are well covered in the marinade.
Marinate for at least 1 hour or overnight in the refrigerator.
Preheat the oven to 180C. Place the chicken and marinade in a large baking dish. Bake for 20 minutes. Turn the chicken over and continue cooking for 20-30 minutes or until cooked, basting occasionally. Serves 4.
KIWIFRUIT WITH PASSIONFRUIT ANGLAISE
1 cups milk
tsp vanilla paste
3 egg yolks
2 Tbsp sugar
4 Tbsp passionfruit pulp
6 kiwifruit - green or gold, or a mixture
Finely grated rind of 1 NZ navel orange
cup orange-flavoured liqueur
To make the anglaise (custard), bring the milk to boiling point.
Add the vanilla paste. Beat the egg yolks in a bowl until creamy and light. Pour the hot milk on to the egg mixture, whisking continuously.
Return the mixture to the heat and cook at a low temperature, stirring continuously, until it coats the back of a metal spoon. Cool, then fold in the passionfruit.
Peel and slice the kiwifruit and sprinkle with the rind and liqueur.
Stand in a cool place for about 30 minutes. Arrange in serving dishes and spoon a little of the custard over the top.
FILO FISH WITH TAMARILLOS & BRIE
2 to 3 tamarillos
4 small skinned and boned white fish fillets (about 500g - try to choose fillets that are not too thick)
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
12 sheets filo pastry
50g butter, melted
Preheat the oven to 180C.
Slice the brie into 4 portions. Peel and slice the tamarillos.
Cut each fish fillet in half. Sandwich the tamarillos and brie between the fillets. Season.
Lightly butter a sheet of filo and top with another sheet. Brush that sheet with more butter and top with a further sheet of filo. Place a fish "sandwich" at one end. Fold over the sides.
Roll up to form a parcel.
Repeat with the remaining filo and fish.
Lightly butter each parcel and place on a greased baking tray. Bake for about 25 minutes, until golden.
Copyright Jan Bilton
- The Marlborough Express