What is a food you never grew up eating, but now enjoy a lot as an adult? There are several for me, but just to name a few: pears, asparagus, cauliflower, and kiwi. I have had strawberry-kiwi flavored drinks, but never a fresh kiwi until several years ago. I am so glad I tried kiwis, with their sweet, but a little sour, taste and little crunchy black seeds.
One medium kiwi contains around 40 calories, 10g carbohydrates, and 2g fiber, and contains vitamins and minerals, including vitamin K, vitamin C, potassium, and magnesium. Kiwis contains very little fat, sodium, and protein.
- Buy: Look for fresh kiwi that have smooth, firm outer skins. Avoid kiwis with wrinkled skin or soft spots, which indicates over-ripeness.
The only brand of kiwi I have seen dried had added sugar. If dried kiwi without added sugar are available, choose that brand. Since dried fruits have water removed, the carbohydrates and calories are higher than in fresh fruit. Whether your dried kiwi has added sugar or not, limit the portion to just a couple pieces per day.
- Price: According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, fresh kiwi averages about $2.00 per pound. A single kiwi does not weigh much, so you may be able to get maybe five or six kiwis for that price. Among tropical fruits, kiwi is somewhat inexpensive.
- Store: Store unpeeled kiwi at room temperature. If kiwis feel soft with a little pressure when you buy them, make sure to eat within a day or two. Hard kiwis will usually ripen within four to six days at room temperature. (If they do not ripen – which has happened to me before – try the lemonade recipe in this post.)
- Prepare: Wash kiwis before cutting. There are several ways to prepare a kiwi. One method is to cut off both ends, peel off the skin with a small knife, and cut to desired size pieces. Another method is to cut the kiwi in half and scoop out the flesh with a spoon. Louisiana State University has their own way to peel kiwis. Try whatever makes sense for you.
- Eat: Enjoy kiwi raw in salads, drinks, fruit pops, and more. Look for recipes that cook with kiwi too.
- Food Science: Fresh kiwi contains an enzyme called actinidin. While this enzyme makes gelatin salads with fresh kiwi break down into a watery soup, fresh kiwi can be used to tenderize meat. Only leave a kiwi mixture on meat for a short time, as the meat can become mushy rather than tender.
- Trivia: Kiwi skin is edible. If you do not mind the fuzzy skin, give it a try.
- Eat Smart, Spend Smart, Kiwifruit, Iowa State University Extension and Outreach
- Food Sense, Kiwifruit, Utah State Extension
- Preserving Kiwifruit, Oregon State University Extension Service, 2013
- USDA, Agricultural Research Service, National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference Release 27
The recipe below was shared with a local cooking class in Piatt county several years ago. The result was thumbs up.
Strawberry Kiwi Lemonade (Serves 4)
Cool off with a lower-sugar lemonade flavored with summery fruits!2 kiwis, peeled and quartered
12 medium strawberries, stemmed and quartered
1 cup lemon juice (or around 4 lemons, juiced)
1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 cups cold water
1. In a blender, add kiwi, strawberries, lemon juice, and sugar. Blend until smooth.
2. In a large pitcher, combine kiwi mixture and water together.
3. Refrigerate until cold or serve immediately over ice cubes.
Nutritional analysis per serving: 90 calories, 0g fat, 5mg sodium, 24g carbohydrate, 2g fiber, 1g protein