Welcome to the 7th Fruit Delivery of 2015

 In Fruit News

Here are some of the reason pears are so great for you. Pears contain two of three antioxidants that are thought to decrease risk of type 2 diabetes. Pears contain more fiber than almost all other fruits, with 22% of your recommended daily intake. They also contain about 12% of your recommended daily vitamin C. They are a good source of vitamin B2, C, E, copper, and potassium. Pears contain more pectin than apples, which helps keep your cholesterol levels in check. Fresh pears are considered “hypo-allergenic” because people with food allergies can often enjoy pears without having a reaction. They are low glycemic, which means the carbs in pears are slow to convert to sugar – so you don’t get a sugar high and crash, which can wreak havoc on your body.

Enjoy the fruit your brain will thank you. Everett Myers, Founder and President of FruitShare™

In Your Box: Colorado peaches, Honeycrisp apples, Dapple Dandy pluots, Thompson grapes, Concorde and Bartlett pears

Honeycrisp apples are just starting so order up to get your fill of these sweet crunchy orbs. We offer these in straight packs of 12 and 24 count packs.

Storage and Ripening
Keep all of the fruit in the refrigerator. Thompson grapes are more delicate and should be refrigerated and enjoyed first. Only wash your grapes before eating them as moisture can lead to mold. Sometimes a split grape will create extra moisture in the bag or clamshell and cause a spot of mold. If this happens, take them out of the bag immediately, remove the fruit that caused the issue and wash the fruit. Dry them off by placing them on a paper towel and then refrigerate them again. Peaches will be ready to eat when the flesh gives to gentle thumb pressure. These Colorado peaches are very delicate, so make sure you don’t wait too long to enjoy them. Some people like peaches and pluots more firm – if this is the case keep them in the refrigerator. Otherwise place a few fruits on the counter to soften if needed. You can also slice and freeze pluots, peaches, and grapes. After they are frozen, we like to use them in smoothies, no sugar necessary because they are so sweet on their own. Your Honeycrisp apples will keep for at least 2 weeks in the coldest part of your refrigerator. Keep the Concorde and Bartlett pears on the counter. They will be ready to eat when they give to thumb pressure near the stem “check the neck”. Bartlett pears will usually turn yellow when they are at their juiciest. Concordes some people like crispy and others like to wait longer for them to give to slight thumb pressure at the stem. Try them both ways to see what you prefer.

What It Takes
The Stewart brothers provided these Concorde pears and some of your Honeycrisp apples as well. The Stewarts orchard is situated near Hood River, Oregon and is one of the most beautiful orchards you’ll ever see. With Mount Hood as a backdrop and the Columbia River flowing just below the orchard they know what it means to protect the environment. Ronny and Jimmy have been working on the family farm near Hood River since they were children. But there wouldn’t have ever been a family farm if their parents, Ron and Cheryl, hadn’t 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. His knowledge about organics and farming were passed down to Ronny and Jimmy, who took over the farm in 2003. Since then, the brothers have expanded the farm to include many varieties of pears, apples and more. They have found that one of the best things to do is create a natural loop in the production process. They do this by composting cast-off fruit and peels, then using the composted material to keep the soil rich and fertile. It’s a sustainable way to reduce waste and keep the farm running properly so they can continue growing outstanding fruit. Concordes are known for their sweetness and juiciness, as well as their tall, beautiful shape. They have yellow-green skin, and can be eaten while crisp, making them a unique variety because you don’t need to wait for them to fully soften! If you do like a softer pear you can wait until they fully soften and you will enjoy all the complex juicy flavor they have to offer. Concorde pears are perfectly suited for slicing on a cheese plate or into a fresh salad because they don’t turn brown when sliced like most pears.

This week’s Honeycrisp apples (some of), Dapple Dandy pluots and Bartlett pears are from the Stennes family. Like many of our organic growers, the Stennes family farm in Washington’s Cascade Mountains is a family affair. The farm began in 1894, when the Stennes family emigrated from Norway and planted apple trees on their homestead. Now, Keith is joined by his twin sons, Mark and Kevin to make up the third and fourth generations of Stennes farmers. They have grown the orchard to include not just apples, but also cherries, pluots, plums, and of course, pears. This week they’ve provided some great pears. The Bartlett pears are the classically pear-shaped fruit in the box with green to yellow-green skin. As they ripen, they turn from bright green to nearly all yellow. Remember to “check the neck”. When they give to thumb pressure at the stem end they will be fully sweet and juicy.

David Bedford of the University of Minnesota developed the Honeycrisp apples with good old fashioned cross breeding over 20 years ago. It is the most popular apple we know of for eating fresh. It’s crisp sweet and tart combination along with the juicy crunch makes it a favorite. Bedford says that studied under an electron microscope, Honeycrisp cells are twice the size of other apples, which accounts for their unique, pleasing texture. The cells fill up with natural sugar water which makes them delicious even to the core. We try to get you as many Honeycrisp as we can every year, but they are always limited and their season is short so enjoy them while they last. If you want more we do sell them by the straight box as well. They are great for eating out of hand but if you’re so inclined they make fantastic apple sauce too. Keep all your apples in the coolest part of your refrigerator to keep them crisp.

Enjoy this late season Colorado peach variety from Brant and Carol. We are so pleased with the delicious peaches they got to us this year. It’s a little hard knowing we won’t see anymore until August 2016.

Health and Wellness
With back to school and family schedule changes, this is a great time of year to start building good habits around snacks. Send your kids to school with fresh fruit in their lunches every day. Have fruit at sport events and ice cold water with a teaspoon of salt (for electrolytes). Fruit is filling and nutritious, and will help them stay focused throughout the day. A good tip is to include the tougher fruit in lunch boxes because it will hold up better until lunch time. If you want to send softer fruit like peaches and grapes, make sure to put them in a hard-sided container with some paper towels for padding and clean up. Apples, grapes and pears are excellent types of fruit to include in lunches. If you slice apples or pears–remember to squeeze a little lemon (citric acid) on them to keep them from browning (oxidizing).

I grew up enjoying this recipe. It is great for breakfast straight or as a topping on oatmeal, pancakes or waffles. In the evening it is a delicious dessert and it makes a great topping for vanilla ice cream if you really want to indulge.

Cinnamon Sautéed Apples & Pears

4 tablespoons unsalted butter
3 apples—peeled, cored and sliced 1/3 inch thick
2 pears—peeled, cored and sliced 1/3 inch thick
2 tablespoons light brown sugar (experiment you may be able to use less)
Pinch of cinnamon

In a large skillet, melt the butter. Add the apple and pear slices and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned in spots, about 5 minutes. Stir in the sugar and cinnamon, reduce the heat to low and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened and lightly caramelized, about 10 minutes longer. Serve immediately or refrigerate overnight and rewarm before serving.

Courtesy of foodandwine.com

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