Golden Berries. Have you heard of these sunny, little orbs? They are also referred to as Peruvian Grouncherries or Incan berries, and possibly more names, but these are the ones I have heard of. They are lovely. These are new to me. I saw them for the first time when The Latin Lover and I were in Vancouver, BC in Canada earlier this year. By the way, Vancouver is a spectacular city. Absolutely gorgeous and we had gorgeous weather. Cool and sunny which is the weather of choice for The Goddess. While The Latin Lover worked, The Goddess played. She wandered into the downtown Chinatown. As you know, she has a real thing for ethnic markets, so it stands to reason that she loves Chinatown. These bins are filled with dried shrimp, dried mussels, clams and different types of fish. Look at these mushrooms. Can you believe it? These jars are filled with different sizes and types of dried scallops. If it’s dried, they have it and they have dried things you can’t even imagine. Fascinating! The next day, we took a little ferry across to Granville Island, which took us under the bridge, to the other side, looking back at Vancouver proper. Granville Island is touristy, but it in a fun way. This guy was making these giant bubbles and the kids (of all ages!) were having good, clean fun popping them. It’s a great place to walk and just enjoy the day. If you find yourself in Vancouver, go to Granville Island. And of course, go to the market there. Finally, back to Golden Berries. We saw them in the market on Granville Island. It was an interesting culinary experience and a great place to enjoy a pastry, coffee and people-watch. Anyway, if you look at the picture that currently graces the Goddess Cooks opening page, you’ll see boxes, yes boxes of these lovelies front and center. I haven’t seen them in this quantity here yet.
When growing, they are surrounded by husks, like tomatillos have. But they taste nothing like tomatillos. You have to remove the husks before eating, but I’ve only seen them without the husks. Aren’t they pretty? Golden Berries are about the size of a grape or large marble. The flavor is interesting. They start out sweet, then there’s a hint of acidity, then back to sweet. They have tiny, tiny seeds…see them there. But are not the least unpleasant to bite into. I like to use them as a garnish and toss them into salads. They are small enough so you don’t have to cut them in half. Also, you can purchase dried golden berries, as well as fresh.
I just wanted to pass this on to you, so when you see them in the market, you’ll know about them and maybe decide to purchase them. I think you’ll like them. You may even love them!
One last thing…While in Chinatown I had lunch (which was delicious); steamed pork buns and sticky rice. As I strolled along one particular street I browsed the markets. I heard this clicking or clapping sound and I finally saw that a woman was sitting near some of the bins. She she was the one making the sound…then I saw why. It’s a bird feeder!!! See the pigeon there in the middle? Now I know why some of the stalls had plastic covers on the bins. Ingenious!