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Vanilla Verjuice Poached Tamarillo Cake

Vanilla Verjuice Poached Tamarillo Cake

To translate verjuice literally it means – green juice – and it’s a slightly sharp, slightly sour juice most commonly prepared from unripe grapes. It can be also made from crab apples.


  • 250 grams softened butter
  • 1 cup caster sugar
  • grated rind 2 lemons
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 cups self rising flour
  • ½ cup ground almonds
  • ½ cup semolina
  • 1 cup unsweetened plain yoghurt

Vanilla Verjuice Poached Tamarillos

  • 1½ cups verjuice and vanilla bean syrup
  • 4 tamarillos


  1. Make a small cross cut in the base of each tamarillo and place in to a saucepan with the verjuice. Bring to just under a simmer and poach for 10 minutes, remove from the heat and allow the tamarillos to cool in the syrup for an hour before removing.
  2. Beat the butter sugar and lemon rind together until light and fluff then beat in the eggs one at a time. Sift the flour and fold into the creamed mixture with the ground almonds, semolina and yoghurt
  3. Turn into a lightly greased and base-lined 24cm cake tin. Cut the tamarillos in half and place the halves cut side up around the top of the cake tin.
  4. Bake at 180 degrees Celsius for about 1 hour until golden and a cake skewer inserted comes out clean.
  5. Once the cake is cooked, pierce the top of the hot cake all over with a bamboo skewer - I find this best if I pierce near or around the fruit, that way you will not see the holes later. Slowly pour the syrup over the cake while hot and in the tin. Allow to stand for 2 hours before unmoulding.
  6. Serve warm or cold dusted with icing sugar and accompanied with extra poached fruit, if wished.

Cooks Tips

- If tamarillos are out of season, use apricots, peaches, pears, nectarines. - If you wish to have extra fruit to accompany, cook up 8 tamarillos in the full 750mls of verjuice with vanilla bean syrup and use only half the syrup to pour over the cake. The remaining syrup can be used to accompany the fruit with the cake. - I find this best made in a spring form cake tin and when I pour the syrup over, I always sit the cake tin in a deep dish or tray to make sure I have no syrup seeping over the bench. - If you do not have verjuice with vanilla bean syrup, make up a mixture of 1 ¼ cups water with ¾ cup sugar and the peeled rind of one lemon. Stir over a low heat until the sugar has dissolved before poaching the fruit. - Do not boil the fruit in the syrup as it will turn to pulp quickly. If your fruit is very ripe, then it may require less cooking time, just keep an eye on it. To find a local supplier, call 0800sabato for a stockist near you. - Size 7 eggs were used here.

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