This Goldenberry Pico de Gallo combines goldenberries with more typical tomatoes, red onion, chiles, and cilantro in a simple, vibrant fresh salsa. Its sweet-tart flavor is perfect as a dip with chips, on fish tacos, or spooned over grilled chicken and fish.
👩🏻🍳 Tamara Talks - Recipe Inspiration
I wax poetic about Peru, and at the risk of being repetitive, here I go again... Goldenberries first appeared on my radar at Hanz - a little sandwich and craft beer spot in Cuzco. The owner/chef personally brought a beautiful frozen goldenberry (husk intact) dipped in dark chocolate.
This little treat stuck in my mind, and the first time I saw them in the US, I knew I had to create a new recipe or two featuring goldenberries. This simple, fresh goldenberry pico de gallo is only the first!
What are Goldenberries?
Physalis Peruviana - aka "goldenberry," "Inca berry," "aguaymanto," or "pichuberry" - is a sweet-tart vitamin and fiber-rich fruit native to the Peruvian Andes. This pretty little fruit is wrapped in a husk (calyx), and it looks a little bit like a small tomatillo. Chefs are known to use them to garnish their desserts, and when dipped in dark chocolate, they're sublime.
Are goldenberries healthy?
In short, YES! Here's the "reader's digest condensed" version. The bottom line is that goldenberries contain numerous vitamins and minerals in small amounts, and they really stand out for:
- fiber - including pectin, a soluble fiber that can help lower cholesterol, stabilize blood sugar, and improve digestion
- antioxidants - including vitamin C (the fresher the better), carotenoids (thus the vitamin A content), and polyphenols
- potassium - helpful in lowering blood pressure
We are also playing with dried goldenberries. Interestingly, these little fruits contain 2 grams of protein per serving due to their seeds. They're definitely a healthy snack/ingredient, though I will stop short of calling them a "super food." For more information see Goldenberries are super, but please don’t call them a superfood!
📋 Ingredients You'll Need
Here is a quick look at the ingredients in the recipe – it’s handy to use at the grocery store or as a summary of what you need. Skip to the recipe for quantities.
- red onion - I almost always soak my red onions in a bowl with ice, water, and salt (see salsa criolla for more detail).
- goldenberries - I love the sweet-tart flavor of fresh goldenberries, and there really is no substitution. If you still want to make a fresh pico de gallo, and can't find them, this is a similar recipe that doesn't include goldenberries.
- tomatoes - I use tiny tomatoes, and normally in a mix of colors because I love colorful food! Feel free to use your favorite!
- cilantro - Thin stems and leaves only please! Woody stems are bitter...
- chile - My favorite chile for pico de gallo is the Fresno chile. I can't always get them. However, I can usually get red jalapeños. That is what I used on photo day. Jalapeno chiles, serranos, New Mexico green chile will work.
- citrus juice - I chose a blood orange and a lime. The goldenberries are sweet-tart, and I didn't want the salsa too acidic. We are really happy with this blend. If you can get sour oranges, that would be more authentic. I usually use a combination of orange and lime to get closest to the Peruvian sour orange.
- Prepare the salsa ingredients - Soak thin-sliced red onion in a bowl with water, ice, and a palmful of salt. Slice the goldenberries and tomatoes in half lengthwise or as desired. Mince the chile(s). Chop a big pile of cilantro. Squeeze the citrus.
- Finish the salsa - Add all salsa ingredients to an appropriately sized bowl. Combine thoroughly. Taste for acidity and seasoning. If you like a more acidic salsa, add more lime juice. Adjust salt and pepper as desired. Enjoy!
How long can I keep this fresh salsa? We always enjoy it the next day. Beyond that, the flavors get strong.
What can I serve my salsa with? I make tortilla chips in my microwave on the "slim fry" setting. I spray tortillas with cooking spray, salt them, cut them in wedges, and slim fry them for 10-15 minutes. I am looking forward to posting a recipe for fish tacos that specifies this salsa, and I know it's good on grilled chicken and fish.
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