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Tamarillo is an invented name for the tree tomato, the red, egg-shaped, slightly tart fruit of a South American shrub now widely grown in warm areas around the world, particularly New Zealand. The New Zealanders found that it was not selling too well as a tree tomato, so in 1966 they decided to give it a new, ‘sub-tropical-sounding’ name. The precise genesis of tamarillo is not known, but presumably it contains at least subconscious echoes of tamarind and tomatillo, the diminutive form of Spanish tomate, ‘tomato’.

Subjects: Cookery, Food, and Drink.

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