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Produce Blog

Gene VersteegGene Versteeg, Produce Buyer and Merchandiser, has been in the produce business for 30 years. He’s an artist of sorts. His medium? Fruits and vegetables. You’ll find his work beautifully displayed at each store. To learn more about the local, conventional and organic offerings at Market of Choice, read Gene’s blog.

Stone fruit is the term used in the produce industry to describe tree fruit that has a pit or “stone” in the center.

We now have great selection of white peaches, sweet yellow peaches, white nectarines, yellow nectarines, apricots, cherries, red flame seedless grapes, and perlette green seedless grapes. Plums will be here soon.

The weather, here, certainly doesn’t feel like summer will ever arrive, but with all of this wonderful fruit coming in, hope is on the horizon!

This is my favorite time of the year in our produce departments, with all the beautiful colors and fragrant-smelling fruits. It gets me excited about the warm months to come, and enjoying these treats outdoors.

Melons are starting to come in, as well, with California cantaloupes starting next week, and several other melon varieties right behind them. The watermelons are excellent now, we just cut a bunch, and they were very sweet and dark red inside. Come down to your Market and let us pick one out for you!

Rough around the edges but sweet to the core, fresh pineapple makes a delicious and healthy snack or ingredient. Perfect for desserts, salads, salsas and marinades, this fruit adds a pleasant, sugary touch to many recipes. Add to meat dishes or curries, or create an amzing pineapple upside-down cake. No matter how you slice it, this tropical treat is hard to beat. Great for young bodies and the young-at-heart, it's rich in manganese, a trace mineral that promotes strong, healthy bones.

2.99 ea (Good thru 5/6 - 5/19/11).

Tip: When choosing the perfect pineapple, look for one that’s plump and heavy for its size and brightly colored with deep-green leaves.

How to cut a fresh pineapple:
1. Cut off the top and bottom of the pineapple with a sharp knife, making a stable flat base.
2. Stand the pineapple upright and remove the skin.
3. Use a paring knife to remove any remaining eyes.
4. Slice the fruit away from the core. Discard core.

For a tropical drink: Puree pineapple, low-fat milk, a splash of coconut milk and a handful of ice cubes in a blender until smooth. Enjoy!

Spring is finally here, and we are starting to get in many different types of wild mushrooms, foraged from the Coast Range and Cascade Mountains. Today, we have black trumpets, yellow foot chanterelles, king oysters, hedgehogs, maitake, portabellas, shiitake and white oysters. We will be getting the first morels soon. As the snow melts and the days grow warmer, they should start popping up. Our stores try to have every mushroom available, and if we can’t get them fresh, we usually have them dried. We normally stock around a dozen different types of dried mushrooms, which are convenient and easy to rehydrate.

Long-stemmed artichokes arrived over the weekend, and they are gorgeous! These are some of the nicest looking artichokes I have ever seen. Bigger than a softball, and weighing in at over 2 lbs, these beauties are a meal in themselves. Try cutting them down the center, brushing them with olive oil, and grilling on your barbeque. About 7 to10 minutes on each side. Or you can do it the old fashioned way, and steam them. Check out oceanmist.com for lots of different ideas for preparing your artichokes.

Fresh in from Rising C Ranches in Buttonwillow, California, we now have incredible heirloom navel oranges! Grown the way they were grown 100 years ago, on “old line” Washington navel trees, these oranges have old-fashioned flavor and taste that has been bred out of many newer varieties.

We also have Rising C Ranches’ blood oranges, mellow gold pummelos, sweet limes, and Meyer lemons. Now is a great time to try these specialty citrus items, as you entertain family and friends for the holidays.

Minneola tangelos, with their distinct bump on one end, arrived from Sunkist yesterday, along with their Cara Cara pink fleshed navel oranges. These colorful oranges make a nice presentation in a glass of sparkling water.

New crop Chilean peaches, nectarines, cherries and seedless red or green grapes will be arriving in our stores next week.

Happy Holidays!

Ushering in the holidays also means the start of the California citrus harvest!

Satsuma mandarins and navel oranges are now in stores, and we expect several more items to arrive this next week. The navels are starting out a little light colored, but the flavor is excellent, with good sugar content. As the nights grow colder and the harvest progresses, the exterior color will begin to darken.

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The Satsuma Mandarins are available in bulk or in the 5 lb gift boxes. The 5 lb boxes will be on sale next week for 3.99 a box, and will be sold at that price through Thanksgiving day.

These make a great, inexpensive, hostess gift when visiting friends and family. The 5 lb boxes filled with the Clementine “Cuties” will be coming in next week, as well. Seedless and easy to peal, these are a perennial favorite.

I will get my first delivery from Rising C Ranches on Monday, which should include their stem and leaf satsumas, and Meyer lemons. Rising C is our source for many unique citrus items, which you rarely see in grocery stores. Check out their website www.ripetoyou.com.

Chanterelle mushrooms are popping up all over the place in the Coast Range, and I’ve been getting several calls a day from pickers wanting to sell them to us! This is great news for you, because that means it’s time for our annual sale! You can now get these wonderful delicacies at Market of Choice for just $6.99 lb through the November 18 (if weather and supplies permit).

And I just bought a truckload of fresh cranberries from Coquille cranberry growers on the Oregon Coast. They grew organic and conventional, and the quality is incredible. These are large, premium, hand-sorted berries, with dark red color and bouncy firmness. Perfect for your Thanksgiving celebration! We will have them now through Christmas.

Enjoy!



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Produce Dept. Special

  • Web Special: Large Premium Artichokes
    Web Special Large Premium Artichokes

    Native to the Mediterranean region, artichokes are a good source of vitamin C, folate and magnesium.

    2.99 ea

    GOOD THRU 7/18 - 7/24/17

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