THIS WEEK’S FRUIT
Zee Lady Peaches
Renowned horticulturist Floyd Zaiger is responsible for many of our favorite varieties, and the Zee Lady is another Zaiger gem. The Zee Lady is a good sized peach that’s a real beauty, with a vibrant red blush dusted over a warm golden skin. Another freestone, the Zee Lady’s juicy flesh is as great for baking as it is eating out of hand..
Quickly becoming one of our best known and most popular varieties, the Fantasia is a large, tapered heirloom variety. Its deep golden flesh is amazingly sweet and smooth, and its marbled bright red skin makes for exceptionally beautiful presentation. Like many of our more unique and heirloom varieties, the Fantasia is a far more fragile fruit than most farms will even consider growing. Like the Suncrest peach that often ripens at the same time, the Fan- tasia is easily bruised when allowed to ripen properly on the branch, but we’re sure you’ll agree that the taste is well worth the risk.
Dapple Dandy Pluots
Playfully called the “dinosaur egg” pluot, the Dapple Dandy has marbled pink and green skin over delicate white flesh threaded with rose. Kids especially love this pluot for its distinctive coloration and the lack of tartness in the skin.
Flavor King Pluots
A darkskinned pluot with red flesh, it has an intense rich flavor combined with sweet, spicy tones that are reminiscent of the Santa Rosa plum. A nice acid bite and firm texture that softens beautifully as the fruit continues to ripen, the Flavor King is amazing out of hand and equally good for baking.
A NOTE FROM CHEF BECKY
Dear CSA Members,
The kitchen has been cranking up production on our scuffins these last couple of weeks. Some of you may have seen the press we’ve received recently; the New York Times and Oprah magazine have both done stories about our hybrid pastry. A cross between a scone and a muffin, it is a jam-filled pastry developed 7 years ago to accommodate a large inventory of our fruit puree later made into jam. It has the shape of a muffin but the texture of a scone, as it needs to hold inside its cavity a large amount of jam. It is made with flax meal and whole wheat flour but don’t worry, it’s not as healthy as it sounds! It also has eggs and cream. It is the perfect size, not too big, not too sweet either and very satisfying. It is gratifying to see it finally take off. It’s something our Ferry Building shop customers have always known about and some of our mail-order customers as they have only been available at the shop and online. Now, we are going to begin selling them at our Berkeley Farmers’ Markets (Tuesday and Thursday) as well. Of course, they are always available to you, our CSA members as an add-on to your CSA Box.
Our cream scones also got a nod from Barbara Treadwell’s “Favorite Food Finds” on KGO radio. On July 6th she talked about serving our cream scones as part of an authentic English Tea; served with Devon Double cream and strawberry jam. They are also fabulous as a shortcake with strawberries or sliced stone fruits with blackberries or raspberries macerated in sugar. Cream scone shortcakes have become a summer Sunday morning tradition for Maddie and Millie.
We sell both the scuffins and the scones frozen so that you can bake them fresh at home after allowing them to slightly thaw, first. While the scuffins require a muffin tin to bake, all the scones need is a little egg wash and a sprin- kling of sugar. Because they are not too sweet, they can also be used as part of a savory meal; just skip the sugar on top.
I love this time of summer because we are picking the Flavor King Pluots and some of my favorite varieties of nectarines. While the Ruby Grands are waning, the Flavortop and Fantasias (the nectarines that brought me to my husband) are plentiful. Also, the Zee Lady peaches are in! This to me marks the beginning of the prelude to Cal Reds and O’Henry’s. So much delicious food to eat and so little time!
~ Chef Becky