You may have walked right past these in your local market, because, well, what the heck? Usually packaged in plastic clam shells and placed next to the other berries, these green globes (about the size of a strawberry) are fairly new in commercial markets and totally worth going back to the produce section and picking up.
Kiwi Berries (also known as Hardy Kiwi, Grape Kiwi, Cocktail Kiwi…) are the perfect answer for anyone that loves kiwis but not the work of scooping them out of their fuzzy skin. The Kiwi Berries are super thin skinned and smooth so you can just pop the whole thing in your mouth. And they have that wonderful kiwi taste! Look at how tiny…
The Kiwi Berries, or Actinidia arguta, are not genetically modified minis, but their own perennial vine, native to Japan, China and Russia. Because of attempts to make their shelf life longer, we are seeing them pop up more and more in markets world wide. Kiwi Berries have a short growing season, typically September – October and then you might see some imported from New Zealand pop up again in your market from February – March.
As an extra bonus to it’s great taste, Kiwi Berries are rich in vitamin C, vitamin E, magnesium, fiber, and potassium. For best flavor, eat within a week from purchase. I bet these would freeze up really well for smoothies too.
I’m so excited by this fruit that I think I will be adding it to my own garden so I can grow my own. They are called Hardy Kiwi for a reason: they are tolerant of temperatures down to -30 degrees F. I’m in So Cal but for all of you in colder climates, this could be a great addition to your garden too! Meanwhile, I’m going to start looking for these in the farmers markets so I can support my local growers and maybe even talk to them about growing habits of the Kiwi Berry plants in my region. These beauties are from Hurst’s Berry Farm in Oregon.
Now go back to that berry aisle in your store and pick up a packet of Kiwi Berries! I think you’ll love them.
Can’t find these in your market? Try getting them online at Melissa’s.