Tangy Tamarillo and Tomato Sauce

I'm such a sucker for new little edibles. That wacky fruit that smells kinda rotten when it's perfectly ready to eat? Yep. I'll take one, please. Those carrots in an astounding shade of purple? Into my basket they go. Heart-shaped, two-toned tomatoes? Definitely.

So when Food Connect offered up tamarillos in their 'extras' - how could I resist?

 But, uh, what are tamarillos? And what on earth will I make with them?

 A quick internet search informed me that tamarillos:
1) are also known as 'tree tomatoes'
2) are most commonly used in jams and chutneys
3) are super-high in vitamin C and iron and magnesium
4) may look tastily bite-into-able, but the red variety have very bitter skins (so this is not recommended)

But simmered with some roasted and pureed tomatoes, garlic, balsamic and olives (or even your everyday pasta sauce), tamarillos add a lovely *tang.* The kids will never know it's there. Even kids who have developed an acute aversion to tamarillos after biting straight into one.

Tangy Tamarillo and Tomato Sauce
Serves 4-6

The time
20-30 min

The ingredients
1L roasted tomatoes (or passata)
the flesh of 7 or so tamarillos
1 Tbs balsamic vinegar
1 Tbs minced garlic
1 c pitted Greek olives
1 tsp sea salt

+ pasta or rice and feta or parmesan, to serve

The process
1. Blend your roasted tomatoes (or passata) with the de-skinned tamarillos.

2. Transfer to a large pot and add the remainder of the ingredients

3. Simmer for ~20-30 minutes. If your sauce is really wet, leave the lid of the pan off during simmering - if it's thick, leave the lid on. (It'll depend on your tomatoes, so I'll leave this up to you.)

4. Adjust the seasoning to taste, and ladle the sauce over hot rice or pasta. Top with crumbled feta or shredded parmesan (optional).

You could add this sauce to your favourite polenta lasange or use it for dipping savoury ricotta cakes. Convert it into tomato soup on a cold day. I reckon you could even throw some tamarillo/tomato sauce into this spicy jam ...

The cost*
*In AUD in Australia (you may find prices cheaper where you live)
Yikes, this recipe isn't one of my cheapest ... but was definitely farm-fresh and chemical-free. I got my tamarillos for $5 and 2 kg of 2nd-grade tomatoes (with minor blemishes) for $7.50 - both from Food Connect. (Incidentally, I think I used most of the tomatoes for this dish). My organic olives were around $3. And then there was the rice and feta (for me) and the pasta and parmesan (for Nelle). So, this little experiment cost me around $3 per serve. Still, not too bad.

Anyway, should you ever find yourself in possession of a bowlful of tamarillos - have no fear. Just be sure to come back and tell us what you've made with them!

Amanda xx
PS. Did I actually say 'yikes'?


  1. Oh how pretty they are! (and how pretty your daughter is!) What lovely photos...
    ps purple carrots are soooo cool!

  2. Yum! That looks delicious.
    PS. Did I spy a bigger fork?

  3. Your daughter is gorgeous! My daughter also loves to 'help' me in the kitchen and eats half the fruits and vegetables before i even cook with it! lol... Sauce looks delicious!

  4. Juanita - thank you ... you know how much that means, coming from a photographer of your calibre! PS. there's a purple carrot post coming up soon ...

    Linda - bigger fork? why, of course!

    Chinmayie - thank you! I can see why your daughter would want to help ... best vegan chocolate fudge brownies ever? yes please!

  5. I've never even heard of tamarillos before! These are so cool! Thanks for sharing. :)

  6. I have a tamarillo tree and have been looking for recipes, as the fruit is just ripening.
    So far I have made a salsa replacing tomatoes with tamarillos, and it tasted great.
    Tonight's salad consisted of lettuce leaves, cucumber, avocado and tamarillo, dressed with fresh lime juice and olive oil. Yummy.
    After reading your recipe I have decided that tomorrow night's dinner will be eggplant parmigana, adding tamarillos to the tomato sauce. The eggplants are ready to pick.


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Thanks for commenting! Amandaxx