Welcome to the 6th Fruit Delivery of 2014; Aug 27 & 28
Many of you may not be aware of the “Dirty Dozen” list of fruits. These are conventional fruits that have many chemicals in and on them. Pesticide residue testing by the U.S. Department of Agriculture has repeatedly found that fruits such as apples, grapes, peaches, nectarines and berries show chemical residue when tested and consistently rank in the top 5 with pesticide residue. We only bring you organic fruit because of our focus on heathy people and a healthy planet. Organic fruit is grown with a lot of knowledge and attention to detail – paying attention to nature’s cues – thus avoiding the use of toxic chemicals. Enjoy your fruit knowing it is full of vitamins, minerals, fiber and flavor that will keep you strong and energized throughout your day.
To Your Health!
Everett Myers, Founder of FruitShare™
In Your Box:
Thompson grapes and Flame red grapes
Yellow nectarines, Colorado peaches
Flavor Grenade and Honey Punch pluots
Storage and Ripening
Store your grapes in the coldest part of the refrigerator. Only wash them right before you eat them, as moisture can contribute to molding. If the grapes arrive damp take them out of their package and dry them off with a paper towel and then put them back in their bag and refrigerate. Keep your nectarines and peaches out on the counter at room temperature until they give to gentle thumb pressure. Watch carefully, some might be ready to eat right out of the box. Once they give to thumb pressure you can refrigerate them too, which lets you enjoy them over a longer period of time. Keep your pluots in the refrigerator for a crisp, cool treat on warm summer days. Your Valencia oranges can be kept in the refrigerator and enjoyed sliced as a cross section and squeezed into a glass fiber and all . . . refreshing.
What It Takes
We are very fortunate to be including some Colorado Peaches in this week’s box! 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. Eat these quickly they are tree ripe and will be ready to eat when you get them or within just a day or two. They are delicious alone or sliced and served with any breakfast, cereal, waffles, pancakes. If they are getting to soft for you, wash the peach fuzz off of them, then slice them off the pit and put them in a freezer bag. We like to use these frozen peaches in a smoothie. They are also great for baking and grilling. Enjoy!
What is a pluot? The pluot is a fruit that has revolutionized the plum world. It was developed by the famous plant breeder Floyd Zaiger of Modesto, CA. Floyd crossed plums with apricots to come up with the great tasting and beautiful pluot. The pluot is made up of 70-75% plum and 25-30% apricot. Over the years many different variations of the pluot have been grown. Today we include a couple of the most flavorful varieties. The Flavor Grenade is red green and yellow and sweet and juicy. The Honey Punch is more purple colored and is very juicy and mild. Enjoy both of these varieties. They are ready to eat and will keep well in the refrigerator. We don’t wait for these to become soft like you would a plum
The pluots are from Cecelia at Wild River. Located on the banks of the Yuba River in California, exceptional fruit has been grown at Wild River since 1979. In 1991, they transitioned to organic growing practices. At Wild River, they say their success stems from the water, which comes from the melted Sierra Nevada snowpack and is clean, high-quality irrigation for the orchards.
The Flames and Thompson grapes this week are from Three Sisters Farm, owned by Joe and Johnni. Located near Fresno, CA, they use beneficial grasses and flowers – especially poppies – as cover crops, making their vineyard exceptionally beautiful. Three Sisters has been certified organic since 1981, but even before Joe and Johnni began farming, Joe’s parents owned the farm. Some of the vines are over 80 years old!
John’s organic Valencia oranges, grown in Fillmore, CA, are at their peak in June, July and August. Unlike the more familiar navel oranges that flavor up in winter, Valencia oranges hit their stride in summer. We love their sweet-tart juicy flavor during these hot summer days. Valencia oranges are thin-skinned and juicy, perfect for squeezing a morning glass of orange juice. They also make a delicious snack; rather than trying to peel the thin skin, slice Valencias with the skin on and enjoy them as sweetly tart wedges. We recommend storing Valencia oranges in the refrigerator so the skin doesn’t dry out.
We continue to get rave customer reviews about the nectarines from Mike Van Pelt and Jim Morford in Washington State. They have nearly 180 acres of apples, pears, peaches and nectarines. They converted to organic farming about 10 years ago and continue to produce amazing fruit to this day. Part of their secret is training their employees in careful handling and packaging practices. They are experienced farmers who provide knowledge to the seasonal employees by sharing their expertise. With the benefit of that skill, Mike and Jim consistently provide fruit that is healthy, flavorful and totally delicious!
Health and Wellness
This time of year is peak peach season, and that’s good news – not just because they are so delicious, but because nectarines and peaches are incredibly nutritious. Like most fruits, peaches offer plenty of nutrients, but they have a few extra tricks hidden in their juicy sweetness. For starters, nectarines and peaches are a great source of potassium. If you have a potassium deficiency, you’ll might experience fatigue, anxiety, muscle weakness, skin problems, poor memory, hypertension, or even heart problems. Good thing there’s such a tasty source of potassium in this week’s box of nectarines! Nectarines and Peaches also contain plenty of beta carotene, an antioxidant most often associated with carrots. Your body converts beta carotene into vitamin A, which is an essential vitamin for supporting healthy eyes and heart. Lycopene and lutein are two more antioxidants found in peaches, and studies show that both may help prevent heart disease and cancer. These three major antioxidants are also what give peaches their rich yellow-orange coloring. Nectarines and Peaches contain high levels of iron, too, which is necessary for improving metabolism, regulating body temperature, creating antibodies, and making neurotransmitters and hemoglobin. Nectarines and Peaches are also high in vitamin C, fiber and water. Recent studies are even beginning to find that peaches contain antioxidants called polyphenols that may even help prevent breast cancer. No wonder nectarines and peaches are known as superfoods, joining the ranks alongside blueberries and cherries!
Spiced and Carrot Bread Recipe (Nectarines can be used)
3/4 cup chopped pecans
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 1/2 cups peeled and chopped fresh, ripe peaches
3/4 cup freshly grated carrots
2/3 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup milk
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
Preheat oven to 350°. Bake pecans in a single layer in a shallow pan 8 to 10 minutes or until toasted and fragrant, stirring halfway through. Cool 15 minutes. Stir together flour and next 6 ingredients in a large bowl; add peaches, next 4 ingredients, and toasted pecans, stirring just until dry ingredients are moistened. Spoon batter into a lightly greased 9- x 5-inch loaf pan. Bake at 350° for 1 hour and 5 minutes to 1 hour and 10 minutes or until a long wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan on a wire rack 5 minutes. Remove from pan to wire rack, and cool completely (about 1 hour).Courtesy of Southern Living