In my experience, I have found that feijoas seem to be a novelty to some people I have come across in the Northern hemisphere. I am often faced with a puzzled look when I ask someone if they like feijoas, and they say they don’t know what is a feijoa. As for myself, I have literally grown up with feijoas since I was a baby. We had them outside the house on all but one side, as the trees acted as a hedge. And what a most treasured and adored hedge it was too!
I was very pleased to find an article on feijoas in the local Rotorua paper (New Zealand). On page 11 of the Daily Post, Glenys Woollard gives a brilliant recipe using feijoas as well as some background information on feijoas.
- (Above photo taken of Glenys Woollard, ‘Local offering from the wilds of Brazil’, The Daily Post (Rotorua, New Zealand), Tuesday, April 28, 2009, p11)
Feijoas have always been my favourite fruit, for the taste, smell and texture. It is also something that brings back fond memories of my childhood with me sitting outside under the trees feasting on fresh feijoas until my hearts content! But what I did not know until I read it in Woollard’s article was that Feijoas are from Brazil, having been discovered in the South by a German explorer Freidrich Sellow in 1815.
Anyone who knows me knows that I like my food, a lot, well, too much in fact! I had never heard of a feijoa cake before and so when I saw this recipe I just could not wait to try it! In no time at all, my husband and I, together with my Mother managed to prepare and cook the feijoa and ginger cake. We also ate it too! But before it all disappeared I managed to take a couple of photos (above) so you can see the outcome. The cake was incredibly soft, similar to a sponge cake. The chunks of feijoas and ginger gave the cake a beautiful texture that made it very pleasant to eat. The taste was, well, what I can say, as a feijoa lover and ginger fan … it was spectacular!
Below is the recipe from Woollard’s newspaper article: Feijoa & Ginger Cake
* 100g butter
* 3/4 cup sugar
* 1 cup peeled and diced feijoas
* 1/2 cup sultanas
* 1 egg
* 1 1/2 cups flour
* 1 teaspoon baking soda
* 1 teaspoon ground ginger
* 1/4 cup chopped crystallised ginger
* 2 or 3 tablespoons milk
Grease and line a 19cm square tin; preheat the oven to 180 degrees celcius. Melt the butter in a heavy based pot large enough to hold all the ingredients. Remove from the heat and stir in the sugar, then the feijoas and sultanas.
Add the beaten egg, followed by the sifted flour, baking soda and ginger, then the crystallised ginger nad enough milk to giv a soft dropping consistency. Mix until combined then spread in the prepared tin. Bake in a moderate oven for about 40 minutes, then stand the tin on a wire cooling rack for 15 minutes before turning out.
Serve warm with cream for dessert, or cold as a cake.