The physalis fruit is also known as the cape gooseberry, goldenberry or ground cherry. It is native to South America, but has been introduced to Hawaii and Australia and can be grown in California. The physalis berry is surrounded by a golden husk called a calyx, and the actual ripe fruit usually resembles a small tomato. Physalis is an excellent source of dietary fibre and vitamin C, according to Specialty Produce. Despite its exotic appearance, physalis is very easy to eat.
Remove the outer husk by pulling off each leaf individually.
Wash the berry in cool water.
Eat the berry whole, or, if you have a larger variety, slice it in half before eating.
Use in dishes if you like. The berry's sweet, tart flavour and meaty texture make it ideal for pies, jams and salad additions.
To store physalis for later use, you can peel off the husk and store in the refrigerator. Speciality Produce recommends spreading the berries on paper towels in a single layer. As always, be sure to wash before eating.
Under-ripe physalis can cause stomach upset in some people, so always ensure that the physalis fruit is ripe before consuming. Green physalis is underripe and should not be eaten.