Riberries are a member of the Lilli Pilli family. I think that most Australians are family with some species of this tree. Around Melbourne they have been extensively planted as street trees and most are familiar with the berries when they fall on our cars. I have a huge Lilli Pilli, also spelt Lilly Pilly, tree outside my house, it’s a beautiful tree but even in winter the vapour from the tree does tend to leave a reside on my car and the windscreen needs a clean if I park underneath it.
The Rural Industries has done a lot of research on these beautiful trees and for more information please visit their website.
Riberry is a small red berry that fades to pink about 12-15 millimetres long that fades to pink when cooked.
The Riberry tree is medium-sized to large tree and grows in sub-tropical areas of Australia
The berries were originally wild harvested, but now because of it’s popularity and demand are now cultivated in plantations.
Aboriginal people ate the small red berries regularly and used them as a bush medicine where the berries were mashed to a pulp and applied to sore ears.
It is well-known that the lilly pilly was favoured by the early settlers, with it’s strong clove and spice berry flavours, to make jams and cordials. Historically it was one of the first edible plants noted by Captain Cook in 1770.
Riberries are becoming more and more popular today in the culinary industry for use in both savoury and sweet dishes.
Riberry are high is folate and antioxidants and an excellent source of calcium.
The Riberry harvest can vary due to seasonal conditions. They can tolerate low temperatures and mild frost and hot summer conditions can cause sunburn if there isnt enough moisture, hence the subtropical conditions are the perfect growing areas.
Riberry fruits from November to February depending on seasonal conditions.
Riberries This particular species has an intense tart, clove, spice, berry flavour with no seeds, it makes a brilliant jam or combines with mixed berries to create great baked goods. I’ve used Riberries in Pavlovas with strawberries and blackberries, plus muntries.
Try this Lilli Pilli and Almond Slice, a great one for yourself or friends visiting.