Welcome to the 1st Fruit Delivery of 2014; week of June 16
Summer is here. Once again it is great to be delivering delicious organic summer fruit to our friends at Angelic Organics Farm. We hope you enjoy the sweet treats in this week’s box. I wish a Happy Summer to all the kids out there and that all the dads had a Happy Father’s Day.
Everett Myers, Founder of FruitShare™
In Your Box:
David Sun yellow peach
Arctic Sweet white nectarine
Yummy Beaut plums
Red Raven plums
Storage and Ripening
This week we are officially into summer fruit in season! We have white and yellow nectarines, and yellow peaches, grapes, cherries, and black and red plums. Keep all of the fruit except the grapes and cherries on the counter at room temperature. They’ll be ready to eat when the flesh gives to gentle thumb pressure. Some people like plums and nectarines more firm. If this is the case for you, place them in the refrigerator and enjoy them firmer. Keep the grapes and cherries in the coldest part of the refrigerator. Only wash your grapes and cherries just before eating them, as moisture can lead to mold due to the high sugar content in these grapes and cherries. Please note that white nectarines have higher sugar content and low acid content compared with yellow peaches and nectarines and they more easily develop soft brown spots. If you notice these spots forming or even mold developing, cut these spots out and enjoy right away. They are great sliced up on anything for breakfast or you can slice them and place in a freezer bag to freeze. You can also slice and freeze plums and peaches or whole grapes and even wholes cherries after using a cherry pitter to pit them. After they are frozen, we like to use them in smoothies, no sugar necessary because they are so sweet on their own. Remember to check your fruit bowl every day and enjoy what is ready. Placing any of the fruit in the refrigerator will give you more days to enjoy it, but don’t forget about it – you want to enjoy each piece at its prime!
What It Takes
Mike Naylor has provided the gorgeous peaches and nectarines. There are two varieties of nectarines: yellow flesh and white flesh. You can tell the difference between the nectarines because the yellow nectarines will have a more golden tone under the blush, while white nectarines have a cream-colored skin along with the blush pink. Inside, the white nectarines have a lower acid content and so have a sweeter and more delicate flavor. The yellow peaches have the classic sweet-tangy peach flavor that is so popular in the summer months. Mike has been farming organically since 1990. He converted the farm to organic practices after inheriting the orchard from his father because he was concerned about the negative effects of pesticides and synthetic fertilizers on workers and in the water. Mike now allows visitors to come to his orchard and rent a house there! His fruit is so special because he picks and packs it directly in the field, so it is riper and sweeter than many other orchards. You’ll taste the difference in this week’s peaches and nectarines!
The Sugarone green grapes this week are from Roy Rucker. He has a long history of organic farming. He has been farming his land at Rucker Homestead in the Coachella Valley of California since 1955. Besides his incredible seedless green grapes, Roy grows grapefruit, tangerines, oranges, blood oranges, lemons and tangelos. I asked Roy, “So, what exactly is a Sugraone Grape, anyway?” Roy told me, “it’s a blend of grape varieties, including Cardinal and other unknown varieties. It has been a good grape for me because it tastes great and comes on the heels of the Flame grape, so I keep a continuous supply of grapes but I don’t have all of them coming at once.”
We are excited to have early season Chelan cherries this year from Adolfo Alvarez. Adolfo Alvarez started his career with very little, except his willingness to work hard and a desire to learn everything he could. In 1998, after many years of working for other farmers, he decided it was time to buy his own 80-acre farm in Prosser, Washington. He works tirelessly to expand and improve his orchard, continually grafting new varieties to improve his quality and yield. You can’t talk to Adolfo for long without him coming back to his fundamental purpose, “It’s for the kids.” His concern for the health, safety and welfare of not just his own children, but for the farmworkers’ children and all the children of the community, is what inspired him to do his utmost to improve the environment and the quality of our food supply. These are values we at FruitShare feel deeply about too. Fresh cherries are a great source of vitamin C and antioxidant. It is thought that eating cherries, as well as other antioxidant fruit and vegetables, will reduce the risk of heart disease and even some types of cancers. Eating cherries is known to help the body normally absorb iron, improve the growth and repair of all body tissues, help heal cuts and wounds and even aid in keeping teeth and gums healthy.
Dick Kauffman finds organic farming much more satisfying than conventional methods. He shares having volunteered in the U.S. Peace Corps with FruitShare founder Everett Myers. After years of farm management in the Napa area, Dick began his own orchard and switched over to organic growing methods in 1999. Now, he has 82 acres of delicious stone fruit, including the red and black plums in your box.
Health and Wellness
Take advantage of the early summer weather to get your whole family outside! Get active by playing a game of kickball with the neighbors, taking the dog for a walk, or even playing tag while grilling dinner! Exercise doesn’t have to feel like work – in fact, you’ll be more successful in staying active if you are having fun while exercising. Find an activity you enjoy doing with your family or friends and you’ll be more likely to continue being active and enjoying this lovely summer weather! My family likes to take a football along when we walk. Playing a little catch incorporates in some quick starting, stopping, strength and agility into the walk – and who doesn’t like playing catch in summer? Just make sure you’re away from cars, bikers and other pedestrians when throwing the ball.
4 peaches (nectarines work too but I wouldn’t use white ones)
2 tablespoons melted unsalted butter
Heat grill to medium-low. Halve and pit peaches. Brush both sides with butter. Place peaches on the grill and cover. Cook until charred and softened, about 4-5 minutes per side.
Courtesy of marthastewart.com