Ever since having Evie, I've found myself walking around my neighborhood at hours I've never seen before, like 8 a.m on a Sunday. As it turns out, this is the best time to walk around Brooklyn! The streets are empty and it feels like we have the whole neighborhood to ourselves. It was at this hour that I also discovered farmers markets. Now every Sunday, we meander down to our local farmers market and load up on fresh eggs, vegetables, fruits, and flowers for the week. The best part about the farmers market is that I've been discovering fruits and vegetables that I've never even heard of before, like husk tomatoes, my new favorite snack.
I had to ask the lady working at the farmer's market what these strange little husked guys were. She said they were husk tomatoes or husk cherries or ground cherries - the mysterious fruit seemed to have a lot of names! She then showed me how you can eat them fresh and popped one right in her mouth. Even though they are related to the tomatillo, she explained, they don't taste like tomatoes like one would assume, but almost have a pineapple-ly taste. I was intrigued, and after sampling one, I immediately bought two cartons. I placed one carton on the top of my stroller and by the time we arrived home, the carton was empty. They are so yummy and fun to pop in your mouth, you kind of forget to stop.
Husk tomatoes have such a unique taste that they are really hard to describe, but a tomato crossed with a pineapple is the best way I've heard yet! The yellow-orange fruit wrapped inside the lantern-like husks are firm like a cherry tomato or grape, but have a mild, sweet and fruity flavor. You really just have to taste them for yourself.
To eat them, just squeeze the papery-husk and pop the fruit right into your mouth. Since they are so healthy and pop-able they've become my go-to snack while I work from home. By the end of the day, my desk area is full of empty husks! You can also cook with them by adding them into salads, and salsas, or use them to make ground-cherry jam. Here is a delicious looking salad featuring husk tomatoes in the salad and as the salad dressing. With their husks kept on they can last in the refrigerator up to five to seven days and are usually available at farmers markets or in CSA boxes in August and September.
If you live by a farmers market, you have to go see if they have this unique snack and try them before their season ends!
(All photos, jamie grill photography)