Produce report: June 3
FRESH IN: It’s kumara harvest time and the gold and purple varieties are good buying now, joining the more-familiar Owairaka reds. “This season has been spectacular as we’ve been blessed with great growing and harvesting weather conditions for our Dargaville Kumara. There is plenty to be had so they’re excellent buying”, says New World Fresh Expert Brigit Corson. Interesting to know that the leafy kumara tops can be used as well as the tubers. If you ever get your hands on any, treat them like spinach and add to soups.
Look out for butterkin squashes when you are in the supermarket. With orange skin, they taste like butternut and are just as versatile. Grey-skinned pumpkin remains standout buying. Cabbages and mushrooms are plentiful too. Tamarillos are becoming more available as their long season progresses.
LOOK FOR: Local grapefruit. The season has just started so search around the neighbourhood and ask nicely. “Grapefruit is just becoming available now. Arriving fresh from our Gisborne growers at your local New World any day now, and will stay until the endof the year” says Brigit. Grapefruit does not ripen off the tree but the ripe fruit can stay on the branches for several weeks if you are not ready to harvest yet. Once picked, grapefruit will keep well if stowed in the vegetable crisper in the fridge.
MOVING ON: Local eggplants will be gone in the next couple of weeks to be replaced by imports. And it’s bye bye feijoas, but it is not all bad news. “While normally we may be seeing some shortages in produce at this time of year, with the long warm weather we’ve had this Autumn, lots of your favourite fruit and veg are still plentiful!”