Demand for root vegies up with cooler weather
AS THE weather cools, we're seeing an increasing demand for root vegetables such as sweet potatoes and pumpkins, and wintery fruits including pears and apples (crumble, anyone?).
All apples are fantastic eating at the moment, but Jazz apples from Batlow are the pick of the bunch.
Also look out for a new premium variety known as Bravo: they have a distinctive deep burgundy colour and were created from the same plant breeder who created the Pink Lady.
We have excellent supplies of bananas from North Queensland, as well as the larger September Candy plums and Corella, Packham, and Josephine pears.
Citrus fruit like lemons and mandarins are still going strong, while rockmelon and watermelon are in good supply.
In avocados, we're starting to see Shepards phase out and the Hass come back into season.
Although blueberries are scarce at the moment, the Queensland season will start in four weeks and supplies should improve. Stanthorpe grown strawberries are also in short supply due to weather conditions.
However, Stanthorpe is producing a large variety of vegies at the moment, including beans, capsicum, silverbeet, and leeks.
We've seen a bumper crop of green cabbages arrive in the market, and there's also plenty of local spinach and tomatoes (although as the season changes, expect tomato prices to increase). Snow peas are still coming from Victoria, but the Queensland harvest will begin in about two weeks.
Best value vegies this week include cauliflower, corn, broccoli, radish, rocket, lettuce, cucumber, and eggplants. Horseradish, ginger, and garlic all pack a flavour punch and are great buying.
This week's top pick is chilli, which is currently in oversupply.
Homemade chilli jam is a favourite condiment for lovers of Thai food, but it also works well with poached or fried eggs and burgers.
Blend six to eight chillies (leave seeds and membranes if you like extra heat), garlic, ginger, 1/4 cup fish sauce, and 500g tomatoes or capsicum.
In a large pot, mix this puree with 600g white sugar and 200ml red wine vinegar, plus extra chopped tomatoes.
Bring to a simmer and cook for 30-40 minutes, stirring frequently.
You can buy the best of what the season has to offer at your nearest Your Local Fruit Shop.
Go to www.yourlocalfruitshop.com.au to locate your closest store.
Check out the Your Local Fruit Shop Facebook page for the latest news from your local fresh produce experts at https://www.facebook.com/yourlocalfruitshop