Kiwi fruit

Kiwi

Synonyms:
Kiwifruit, Chinese Gooseberry
Plural:
Kiwi, Kiwifruits, Chinese Gooseberries
Family:
Actinidiaceae – Kiwi Fruit family
Species:
Actinidia deliciosa

Origin

Kiwis come from China; monkeys consumed them in the valleys of the Yangtze River to quench their thirst — hence, the synonym Ape’s peach. The New Zealander James McGregor brought the seeds from China to New Zealand in around 1906. Alexander Allison raised the first plants and yielded the first crop in 1910. And the kiwi changed from the Chinese yáng táo (Yang peach) to being named after an animal that only lives in New Zealand: a chicken-sized flightless bird with a chubby body and a brown plumage. The New Zealand kiwi export began after the Second World War.

Plant

Kiwi are creeping plants which entwine themselves up to 8 m high and yield hairy fruits about the size of a hen’s egg.

Cultivation

Besides New Zealand, Italy, France, Greece, Spain, California, Chile and Israel also cultivate kiwis.

Importations

All the year round from the countries mentioned obove.

Fruit

Edible:
The flesh.
Inedible:
The skin.
Odour and flavour:
It is fresh and sweet with a light acidic taste, reminiscent of gooseberries and strawberries.
Shape:
Round-oval.
Weight:
About 100 g.
Bowl:
The skin is dark brown, rough and hairy.
Flesh:
It is emerald-green with bright stalk in the middle and has black seeds arranged like star shapes.
Ripeness:
the skin softens under light pressure and can be peeled like potato skin.
Overripe fruits:
They become unpleasantly soft and the skin starts to shrink.
Unripe fruits:
They are hard.

Usage

They may be spooed out and eaten raw as well as used in sweet and hearty salads. They can be mashed for sweet soups, creams or drinks and stewed for compote or boiled down for jam.

Storage

Ripe fruits can be stored in the fridge for about two weeks and for four days at room temperature.

Tip

To quicken post-maturation, put some kiwis together with apples or bananas in a paper bag: These fruits disassociate the maturation-gas ethylene.