'Strasberry' - the fruit that's halfway between strawberry and raspberry

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London, Mar 30 : The great British summer will not be the same without the traditional dish of strawberries and cream. But to fill the void a new fruit has come which will get people in the mood -- the "strasberry".

The new fruit, genetically a strawberry whose deep-sunken seeds and round shape give it a striking resemblance to a raspberry, has been enjoying a surge in popularity across continental Europe.

Waitrose, Britain's sixth-largest supermarket chain, is to introduce the new berry this year.

The fruit has a sweet taste the retail giant hopes will make it a hit among UK consumers this summer.

The strasberry, which originated in South America, started life as a wild variety of strawberry. It was threatened with extinction until seven years ago when farmers in the Netherlands started growing it on a commercial level.

Since then it has become a popular addition to desert plates in European restaurants.

"The strasberry is a very versatile product which brings the best tastes of summertime and a very pretty appearance to the pudding menu," The Scotsman quoted Nicki Baggott, fruit buyer for Waitrose, as saying.

"As the summer unfolds we won't be surprised to hear that our customers are inviting their friends over for strasberry daiquiris, pavlovas or serving them up with cream," Baggott said.

The strasberry is the latest addition to the list of so-called "heritage" foods being brought back into fashion by Waitrose. These include the Shetland black potato and the Suffolk pink apple.

ANI

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