I hope you’re having a great week!
Before we get stuck into what’s in your box this week, yesterday was international “Pay It Forward Day”. A day focused on giving back with an act of kindness, I decided to give away a FREE BOX. Head to my Instagram or Facebook page to learn more.
At the bottom of this email, I have also given you a hint about a fantastic Mother’s Day giveaway. So make sure you read right to the bottom of this email to find out more.
Now let’s jump into your boxes.
At this time of year, the mid-Autumn market is always quite tricky as we finish off with our Victorian growers and move to the lower parts of Queensland for our produce. If the two areas cross over, our produce can be great value and great quality, However, if there is a couple of weeks gap between the two, then it is very difficult. This time around, some produce is great value, and some is non-existent.
Apples – this week I went back to Batlow for our Pink Ladies. Overall, it is the better region to buy from and is considered by many apple growers as the premium apple growing region in Australia. With its cold winters and long cool summers it’s the perfect climate to produce clean, crisp apples.
Pears – this week’s pears are from Goulburn Valley. Growing up I always associated the Goulburn Valley region with pears, most likely because SPC was always encouraging us to eat their ‘tinned’ delights. Remember the “Awesome Foursome” ads??! Thank goodness our farmers are now offering so much more variety these days and the move to eat fresh pears instead of tinned.
Plums – you have another late season plum called September Candy. The original variety was developed in the northern hemisphere and the fruit is harvested in the opposite time of the year to us so hence the name September Candy. Your plums are another wonderful produce from the Goulburn Valley.
Passionfruit – more Flamenco’s variety again this week. The flavour is the perfect balance of tangy and sweet and very heavy on pulp. I mentioned last week that you can tell a good passionfruit if it is heavy, as it means there is lots of pulp.
💜If you haven’t already, You MUST check out my tip on how to eat a passionfruit on Facebook or Instagram. It’s a game-changer for a no-mess lunchbox and your kids will love showing off with this trick. 💜
Grapes – trial run grapes have come to an end and are now finished for the season. The next best grape for eating at the moment is the Crimson grape. Crisp and full of flavour. This is a major variety grown in Australia and always consistent with quality.
Mandarins – each week our Mandarins will get better and better. I bought your Mandarins from a premium grower but brought their seconds. You will notice the skin of the Mandarin has a few markings which means they are classed as a second but only because of their appearance and the “seconds” label has nothing to do with the taste. Seconds and premium mandarins are grown on the same tree and only the skin determines the classification. Larger supermarket chains won’t take fruit with skin markings, as they sell their produce by how they look not how they taste.
Tomato – the price jumped up this week as there is a gap between tomato growing regions. Over the next few week’s you will notice there is a little less in your box until the Bundaberg season starts.
Ripe Tip: 😉
For optimal sweetness, keep your truss tomatoes on the vine and out of the fridge at room temperature and out of the fridge for optimal sweetness. Cold temperature stops tomatoes from ripening and dulls their flavour.
Dinner idea: Pork w Risoni + Tomato & Caper Sauce. If not a fan of capers, try olives.
Cucumber – have skyrocketed in price. With our cooler nights and less sunlight, it slows down the growth. Our crunchy cucumbers thrive off heat and warmth for optimal growing.
Dinner idea: When my kids were growing up, Sunday night was our tv dinner night and Salmon Pitas w Hummus was perfect, no cutlery required and a good way to give them a fish dinner.
Corn – This Weeks Bargain Buy.
We have seen a seamless transition from Vic to QLD so I was able to maintain the great pricing I have seen all year. I haven’t been able to carry corn this far into Autumn for a few years so enjoy it while we can.
Dinner idea: Mexican wraps are very family friendly; Mexican Beef Corn Salad
Broccoli – this week there was a jump in price for broccoli, but if you’re following us on Instagram and Facebook you may have seen a post mentioning how broccoli thrives during a full moon. We did have a full moon this week, so we should see a price drop next week.
Dinner idea: A green twist on pasta carbonara; Broccoli Carbonara
Potato – this week you have Kestrel Potatoes in your box, which are best for roasting, good for boiling and making chips.
Did you know: The Kestrel Potato is recognisable by its smooth white skin and unique purple blush. The blush is formed naturally by antioxidants called anthocyanin that may offer anti-inflammatory benefits, the flavonoid can also be found in other superfoods such as blueberries and pomegranates.
Dinner idea: the size of the krestel make them perfect for Smashed Potatoes – boil until tender, drain then place on foiled baking tray. Smash each one flat w potato masher, brush w olive oil, (butter, ghee or duck fat if you have for better crunch) scatter w sea salt, pepper, + few thyme or rosemary sprigs + bake until very, very crisp + golden (approx. 30-45 mins).
Pumpkin – you’ve got Japanese (Kent) pumpkins this week from Windolf Farms in the Lockyer Valley. They also produce Jarrahdale and Butternut pumpkins. All pumpkins are in supply from December to May.
Dinner idea: Roast Jap Pumpkin Salad w Soy Dressing is a perfect side to Teriyaki Chicken or Steak with Miso Butter. Use rocket as the salad greens.
Zucchini – local crops have all finished up and Bundaberg has started. This week’s Zucchinis are from Marto Farms. They are renowned for their watermelons. They have finished their final watermelon harvest for the season and now it’s time to harvest their zucchinis they planted in summer.
Dinner idea: Baked Parmesan Zucchini. There’s a saying that bacon makes everything better, I think this also applies to parmesan. The parmesan helps make it kid friendly.
Leeks – our Autumn weather of cooler days brings heartier meals to our menus like soups and casseroles which makes the perfect place for leeks in your box. Only the thick white stem and the palest green part of the top are edible
Wash Tip: Don’t just wash the outside, I suggest washing well by cutting lengthways through the dark to pale green section, pull apart slightly, then rinse away any dirt.
Dinner idea: Chicken w Verjuice, Mushrooms + Leek. This is similar to chicken + leek pie but without the pastry. For ease use chicken marylands rather than jointing a chicken. If you don’t have any verjuice, white wine vinegar makes a good substitute.
Established in 1964, Peter Schreurs and Sons Vegetable Farm has over 50 years’ experience in growing. They specialise in growing 7 different vegetable varieties which are Leeks, Baby Cos Lettuce, Cosberg, Baby Wombok, Kohl Rabi and Radicchio. In 2008 they won grower of the year. Their main goals in producing fresh vegetables is to work towards producing them using sustainable practices including conventional farming, organics, biodynamics, traditional and modern farming and applying this to their production fields. What they are achieving through this, is a farm that has a more diverse and resilient natural environment, with production fields that are healthier becoming more productive.
Mesclun – with our sunny and warm Autumn days I have left mesclun in the box as salads are still on the menu in my household. Admittedly, I am holding on tight to these warmer days and not quite ready to welcome the winter weather just yet.
Baby Spinach / Rocket – you may have either rocket or baby spinach in your box this week. Hail has damaged the Victorian baby spinach crops and with low supply my grower could only give me half the amount I needed. I think it will be around 3 weeks until we see baby spinach back to its normal supply.
Broccolini – leafy greens are still nowhere to be seen at the markets, so rather than just zucchini’s and broccoli, I added this superstar in.
Did you know? That baby broccoli has between 10 to 100 times more cancer-fighting compounds than the more mature florets.
Dinner idea: Great in a stir fry; Honey+ Five-Spice Beef w Broccolini. Recipe calls for to marinade for 1 hour but 10-20mins will be fine as well.
For more inspiration, look up my Pinterest account for more recipes.
I try to give you easy, everyday recipes as I know there is often not a lot of time to cook dinner.
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THIS WEEK’S FOOD PUN