Kawakawa leaves bring delicious flavours to both sweet and savoury dishes. Choose the leaves that have been eaten by bugs.
Kawakawa has various powerful medicinal properties. It contains painkilling compounds, and is a mild sedative. It belongs to the same family as kava and black pepper.
Update 31 January:
Round Wellington the little orange fruits on the female trees are ripening. The sweet pulp tastes passionfruity, and the seeds are quite hot (like black pepper, rather than chilli).
They ripen to some extent off the bush. Don't pick the completely green ones - they won't ripen well. But if they're starting to blush orange, they'll complete their ripening quite easily sitting on your shelf or table or windowsill.
I'm not sure exactly how long they keep for, but last week I picked some on a Monday afternoon and they were still good by late Thursday night.
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