Friday, September 21, 2012

Produce notes from Allen....156 Local Items!!

There are some great offerings this week.  The 5 pound bag of Organic White Potatoes from Hepworth Farms are $2.55 per bag, or only $.51 per pound which is quite a price for an Organic Potato.

Photo by Julie
If you buy Organic Brussels Sprouts at this time of year, a typical price may approach $10.00 per pound.  We have a bountiful supply of local (Hepworth Farms) Organic Brussels Sprouts stalks, at only $2.55 per stalk.  And with every purchase of these Brussels Sprouts, you get a free entirely useless stalk.

Member Ah Ling Neu - photo by Ginger
The local Kiwi Berry season has just begun, but unfortunately has already ended.  We have about a one week supply on hand.  Our local grower has had a crop failure, and we bought whatever remained of their inventory.  Next week we will bring Kiwi Berries from far away Oregon.  These miniature Kiwis have thin fuzz-free skin and you can eat them just like a Grape.  Ripen them at room temperature until they begin to wrinkle and enjoy fuller flavor at room temperature.  You may store the ripened Berries for up to two weeks refrigerated, but the grower recommends bringing them back to room temperature before eating.  My cousin Rita only eats cold fruit and will never fully appreciate these.

We have received a small quantity of Young Local Ginger from Blue Moon Farm in Bloomsbury, New Jersey and quite a lot of it from Old Friends Farm in Amherst, Massachusetts.  This Young Ginger is harvested for only a few weeks a year and happens to be available in the gap between Hawaiian Organic Ginger harvests.  If you haven't tried this Ginger before, it is harvested at a very young tender stage, so it is less fibrous and has no tough skin.  It will last up to ten days refrigerated, whereupon any unused portion may be frozen.  Once frozen, do not thaw.  Simply grate the frozen Ginger and return unused portion to the freezer where it may be stored for several months.  If you are not satisfied with the Peruvian and Brazilian Gingers we have been offering, give this Local Ginger a try.
Photo by Julie
We have been enjoying (enjoying?) a sporadic supply of Bitter Melon from De-Glae Farm of the Lancaster Family Farm Cooperative in Leola, Pennsylvania.  This Green Melon may be ripened until it begins to turn yellow, which increases the bitterness, for all of you who embrace bitterness in your food.  (Not me).  The Bitter Melon, which is popular in many Asian cuisines, has also grown in popularity with those who favor it's nutritional and healing properties.  My favorite use for it is to dice it into soup and then throw the soup away; don't ask me how to use it.
Photo by Julie
A member asked me this week why we have such gigantic displays of Tomatoes in the store. 
9,998 pounds sold last week is why, and there is simply no room for them in the basement.

Allen Zimmerman - Produce Buyer - General Coordinator

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