Jenny, an experienced chef, gave an interesting talk at the Mossman Branch November meeting on using rare fruits for a main dinner.

Jenny said that fruit is often thought of as a sweet, but if the fruit is a good product why not use it in a savoury way. Some ideas of Jenny are:

Put dried mango in glasses of champagne.

Try using casimiroa (white sapote) frozen and blended with ice in a Casimiroa lassi.

Make a jackfruit and pineapple marmalade.

Mix fruit with veges such as juices from carambola and celery or carrot and orange.

Collect fruits that are in season around Christmas and play around with them. Add colour and variety to a buffet meal.

Cut up fruit and place on lettuce leaves, it shows so much better.

Make a vinaigrette with 2 spoons of jam, 100 mls water, salt and pepper, oil and white wine vinegar.

Serve lychees cut up in a salad and try a chilli and mango dressing.
Use 2 eggs
100 mls salad oil
flesh of a medium mango and
1 tsp of crushed chillies. Put in blender and use over salads.

Try a green papaya salad.
Peel papaya, grate the flesh, add lemon juice and stand overnight. Wash in the morning and then add coconut cream and grated coconut.

Jenny continued to give us some more ideas. You can make a lovely buffet table setting by just adding simple and interesting things on the table. Use for example bunches of lilli pillies and try out assorted colourful dishes of all shapes and sizes and set on different heights on the table.

To improve the atmosphere, make dishes that will catch the eye and have lovely smells.

Another suggestion of Jenny is to play around with all sorts of breads, like a mamey sapote and pumpkin seed bread.

Whip butter with fruit and make a nice fruit spread.

Spread a fresh lime and nutmeg butter on assorted breads, wrap in foil and heat.

Mix prawns and sliced casimiroa.

Instead of cranberry jam with the baked turkey, use rosella jam or davidson plum jam.

For an unconventional stuffing for a leg of pork, make a stuffing with lychee and ginger with fresh white bread crumbs and eggs.

Have a vegetarian barbecue with fresh fruit-kebabs and grill.

Fry fish in a batter with passionfruit, top with macadamia butter.

For an exotic dessert, mix pureed casimiroa, a capful of orange liqueur and cream, and cook for a couple of minutes, stirring. Serve as a custard over Christmas or other pudding.

Another different sweet is: put some black sapote with a peppermint chocolate on top in filo pastry and bake.

For a colourful parfait, use a basic custard, whipped cream, pureed fruit and drop in a few nuts.

Jenny ended her mouth-watering talk by saying that a person eats with his eyes first. Never mix too many flavours, only two or three.

Christine Gray

DATE: January 1996

* * * * * * * * * * * * *