Fruit Newsletter for Week 10, September 10th – 14th, 2019
For shareholders with a fruit share, here is the fifth fruit newsletter of the 2019 season from Everett Myers of FruitShare.
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, nectarines, pears, 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 healthy people, healthy communities, 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.
Enjoy the fruit your brain will thank you.
Everett Myers, Founder and President of FruitShare™
In Your Box: Colorado peaches, Gala apples, Bartlett pears, and Seedless grapes
Storage and Ripening
Today’s Colorado peach I find only need 2 days on the counter. They should be very juicy when ready. They can be stored in the refrigerator once they give to thumb pressure to enjoy them over a longer period of time. These Bartlett pears are the first harvest of the season. Keep the Bartlett pears on the counter. They will be ready to eat when they give to thumb pressure near the stem “check the neck”. Your Bartlett pears will take between 4-7 days to give to thumb pressure by the stem and then enjoy them. Bartlett’s will turn yellow as a sign of being ready to eat and at their juiciest. To speed up their ripening process you can place some in a paper bag with a banana, but remember to check them every day. The banana gives off naturally, ethylene gas that ripens fruit faster. Once the pears give to thumb pressure you can place them in the refrigerator to enjoy them over a longer period of time. 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 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 remaining fruit. Dry the fruit off by placing it on a paper towel and then refrigerate it again. These new crop first picking Gala apples are ready to eat. Keep them in the coldest part of your refrigerator to keep them crisp longer. We are nearing the end of the Colorado peach season, so if you want to enjoy some in the winter months we like to wash them and then slice them and place them on a cookie sheet in the freezer. Once frozen you can put them in a container in the freezer and they won’t stick to one another.
What It Takes
This week’s Gala apples 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, and plums.
Brant and Carol bring us two of the mid-season peaches. The Roza and Gleason varieties are a couple of Brant’s favorites and he was very excited that he could get these to us this year. 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. 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 too 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!
Three Sisters Farm, owned by Joe and Johnni Soghomonian, is famous for their grapes. 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 and are still producing grapes!
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 sports 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.
Grilled Peaches with Cardamom Sugar Crust
4 semi-ripe peaches cut in half and pit removed
6 tbl turbinado sugar
1 tbl ground cardamom
Toss the sugar and cardamom together in a bowl. Dip the peaches, flesh side down, into the sugar. Place on a medium/high heat grill and let them alone for approximately 7 minutes. You want the sugar to caramelize on the peaches and create a crust.
Serve with your favorite ice cream, creme fraiche or mascarpone.
Courtesy of foodily.com
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened, plus more for skillet
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled)
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 pounds peaches, pitted, peeled, and cut into 1/2-inch pieces (4 cups)
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/3 cup sliced almonds
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 10-inch cast-iron skillet, 9-inch square baking pan, or 2-quart shallow baking dish. In a large bowl, cream butter, and 3/4 cup sugar with an electric mixer until fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, and vanilla; beat to combine. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt. With a mixer on low speed, gradually add flour mixture to butter mixture; beat until incorporated. Fold in peaches. Spread batter in prepared skillet. In a small bowl, mix together remaining 2 tablespoons sugar, cinnamon, and almonds. Sprinkle mixture over top; bake until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean and topping is golden, 45 to 50 minutes. Let cool 20 minutes before serving.
Courtesy of marthastewart.com