7th Fruit Delivery September 10, 11 & 12, 2013

 In Fruit News

We work hard to put only the best organic fruit in your box each week.  But please know organic fruit can be fickle on an individual fruit level.  Since there is no fungicide or petroleum based wax on it like you will find in conventional fruit.  A small spore can turn to mold rapidly, especially on fruit with really high sugar content.  That is why conventional fruit doesn’t carry the flavor and nutrient value organic fruit does.  The conventional fruit is harvested green and never developed the sugar that makes organic fruit so tasty.  So remember a small blemish or even an occasional insect is a sign of the farms commitment to not using toxic insecticides, fungicide and herbicides on your food.  That being said if you ever have an issue you are concerned about please bring it to our attention.  We value all our customers.

To Your Health!

Everett Myers, Founder of FruitShare™

In Your Box

Colorado peaches

Gala apples

Bartlett pears

Flame grapes

a Hass avocado

Storage and Ripening

Eat the Flame grapes first and keep in the coldest part of your refrigerator.  The apples are ready to enjoy anytime.  Keep your peaches, pears and avocados out on the counter at room temperature until they give to gentle thumb pressure. Once they give to thumb pressure you can refrigerate them too, which lets you enjoy them over a longer period of time. Remember to “check the neck” of your pears to test for ripeness. Keep the apples in the crisper drawer of the refrigerator for a cool treat on a warm day. They’ll stay fresh for several weeks.
What It Takes

The Flame grapes this week are from one of the oldest organic grape operations in the world! The Pavich family are true pioneers of the organic farming movement and are leaders in providing top-notch organic grapes and raisins. It all started with concern over the damaging effects of chemical fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides and fungicides. The Pavich family defied conventional wisdom and began the process of “detoxifying” the soil and plants that is widely used today. They began Pavich Family Farms more than 30 years ago and have grown it to one of the best organic vineyards in the world.  These grapes maybe small but are very high in sugar and should be enjoyed right away.

The Gala apples this week are from Ralph and Cheryl in Washington. Note: These apples were just harvested.  You will note a huge difference from these fresh apples compared with the apples in the stores from New Zealand and South America that are over 6 months old.  Ralph knew from the age of 15 that he wanted to have his own orchard, and that he wanted to use that orchard to help feed children in India. In 1967, he married Cheryl, and a year later they bought their first cherry orchard. It wasn’t until four years later that they got the first crop off the trees, after losing three crops to freeze, rain and fruit flies. By the 1980s, they were able to purchase land in a new area for growing apples – a risk that paid off, eventually allowing them to expand their orchard.  In 1984, Ralph and Cheryl took a trip to Mexico that changed the way they went about farming. “That mission to Mexico made me realize how hard it was for people there to dream about achieving anything, because the opportunities did not exist,” Ralph explains. “I understood that they were coming to the United States for better opportunities for their families. It gave us more insight into what their needs are, and it reminded me of why we had this orchard. It wasn’t so we could keep building things for ourselves. It was so we could try and give back to the families we worked with as much as we can.” But they didn’t stop there, because offering more full-time jobs was not the entire solution; Ralph and Cheryl realized that many low-income families do not have access to the housing, childcare and education they need, so they built 121 homes and apartment units to rent at low-cost for year-round employees. They continued investing in their community by building a preschool and later an elementary school. By the mid-1990s, Ralph and Cheryl were considering replacing their 50-acre plot of cherries with apples because of consistently poor harvests. They decided to give the crop one more year, and to donate all proceeds to a children’s home in Oaxaca, Mexico. The crop was bountiful that year, and today 100% of the proceeds from those 50 acres of cherries are donated to nonprofit organizations!

We are very fortunate to be including some Colorado Peaches in this week’s box! After a very difficult spring that damaged much of the flowering crop, there weren’t very many peaches in this year’s harvest. What is available may be different sizes, but the flavor was not affected by the tough season, so enjoy! Brant and Carol are firm in their commitment to good land stewardship. They use a blend of old and new technology to keep their soil fertile, control pests, and keep their trees healthy and productive. One of their most successful techniques is simply being observant. Brant claims that if you are in your orchard all the time, and you really know your orchard, it’s possible to detect potential problems and nip them in the bud. It is the care that the whole Harrison family puts into their peaches that sets them apart. At their orchard on the western slopes of Colorado’s Rocky Mountains, it is a family affair. The whole family including their sons, parents and nephews, work side by side to grow these excellent peaches.  The mountainous location and unique climate of their farm make it perfect for growing delicious peaches. At almost 4800 ft. in elevation, the orchard’s water supply comes from melting snowpack high in the Rockies. This snowmelt joins the Colorado River and flows down the slope of Grand Mesa where the Brant and Carol tap into it to irrigate their orchards. The hot days and cool nights in their river valley bring the peaches to the peak of flavor and juiciness.

This week also brings some of the first Bartlett pears of the year. These take about 3-4 days on the counter to be ready to eat and they are delicious sweet and juicy. Green Bartlett pears are the classic pear with yellow-green skin and sweet, juicy flesh.  Remember to “Check the Neck” this means when the neck near the stem gives to thumb pressure these pears are ready to eat.  This week, they’re from Ronny and Jimmy, who have been working on their family farm since they were kids. It all started when their parents, Ron and Cheryl, decided to sell their dry-cleaning business and start an organic fruit farm. For many years, Ron was the only organic farmer on the National Commission for Small Farms. In 2003, Ronny and Jimmy took over and expanded the farm to include many varieties of pears, apples and other fruit. They say that the trick to great fruit is creating a natural loop in the production process by composting cast-off fruit and peels, which is a sustainable way to keep the soil rich and fertile – and the final product tastes great!

The avocados are once again from Will and Billy. Avocados are very scare right now, but Will and Billy know what they are doing and have some of the few available right now.

Health and Wellness

The St. Paul Bike Classic is this coming weekend – September 8th! Join us and more than 6,000 other cyclists for a day of biking in beautiful downtown St. Paul. Bring along the whole family for a fun day of biking, music and some delicious fruit! This awesome event supports the Bike Alliance MN and helps the Twin Cities remain the most bicycle-friendly city in the U.S. For more information and to register for the St. Paul Bike Classic, visit https://www.bikeclassic.org/.
Recipe

Raw Kale, Apple & Avocado Salad Sweet & Spicy Raw Balsamic Dressing

2-3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar, 1 teaspoon agave nectar, 2 teaspoons dijon mustard, salt and pepper to taste

Salad

3-5 big stalks of green or purple kale,1 small green apple, cut into small pieces, 1/2 avocado, cubed 1 tablespoon red onion, sliced into thin strips

In a small bowl, whisk together the dressing ingredients. Pull the kale leaves off from the tough stem, and break into small, bite sized pieces. Sprinkle with salt, and massage the leaves for a couple of minutes by scrunching handfuls of kale in your palms, release, and repeat. The kale will become darker in color and more fragrant. Add the kale into a large bowl, drizzle with the salad dressing, and mix thoroughly. Toss in the avocado, apple and red onion. Courtesy of cookieandkate.com

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