THIS WEEK’S FRUIT:
Tarocco Blood Oranges
Frog Hollow Farm, Brentwood, CA
A beautiful orange to deep red flesh is revealed when you slice open a Tarocco. The flesh of the blood orange is firmer and more dense than an orange and its flavor is a little more tart. These beauties sweeten and darken in color as the season progresses.
Abounding Harvest Mountain, Los Gatos, CA
Meyers are sweeter in flavor, lower in acid, and have more juice than the standard lemon. A wonderful addition to hot water on a cold morning and super for adding flavor to savory or sweet dishes. To read more about the fine folks at Abounding Harvest, please see previous blog post at http://bit.ly/2dPH3uI.
Chiechi Farm, Live Oak, CA
Originally known as the Chinese gooseberry due to its Chinese origins. Hawyward Wright, a New Zealand nurseryman propagated his plants by grafting, and they eventually became the preferred cultivar of growers due to their sweet flavor and thin skin.
Olson Organics, Lindsay, CA
California Navel Oranges are considered to be the best Navels for eating out of hand. They have a thick skin that is easy to peel, are seedless and have a meaty and sweet flesh that makes them a perfect snack. TTo read more about Ken Olson, please see previos blog post at http://bit.ly/2grsBOE.
Cuyama Farm, New Cuyama, CA
Fujis are a cross between Red Delicious and Ralls Janet, an heirloom apple dating back to Thomas Jefferson. They are one of the sweetest variety apples around making them a household favorite.
Pink Lady Apples
Cuyama Farm, New Cuyama, CA
Pink Lady’s are a cross between the Golden Delicious and Lady Williams. They are a crisp and juicy apple with a tart finish. Pink skins and a creamy white colored flesh that resists browning make this an excellent apple for salads and slicing.
…all varieties are subject to change…
A NOTE FROM CHEF BECKY:
Dear CSA Members,
I am pleased to say that we have already made a whopping 10-15 batches of our Blood Orange Strawberry marmalade this year and we hope to make more later. This is one of our most popular marmalades. Last season, due to a smaller crop and high demand for the fresh fruit, we were only able to make 2 batches and it flew off the shelves in no time.
The flavor of strawberries generally dominates in any combination, (i.e strawberry/plum and strawberry/cherry) but the tartness of the blood orange juice, and of course, the tangy pieces of peel, stand up nicely to the sweetness of the strawberries. The blood oranges also add much needed pectin to the jam as strawberries have virtually no natural pectin. The strawberries are from Dirty Girl Farm in Santa Cruz and they are amazing. They generally have a windfall of late summer strawberries (that in my opinion are the best) as they get the summer heat. They are sweeter than berries earlier in the season.
The Blood Oranges we use are our beloved Taroccos which you have been getting in your CSA boxes. You can bet we will be planting many more blood oranges in the future; the demand is higher than ever. Taroccos get redder flesh in California with our chillier winters than in more humid climates like Florida. The red color comes from anthocyanin pigments, which is a natural flavonoid antioxidant also responsible for the color of many other fruits including pomegranates and berries. It never achieves the winey, burgundy, deep red of its cousin the Moro, but its juice is more complex and, I think, superior.
The fruit is looking beautiful this year; juicy pulp, splashed with red with a not-too-thick and flavorful skin that’s perfect for making marmalade. Making marmalade is a 4-step and 2-day process. First, the fruit is juiced. Then, the peel is cooked until it is soft and can be pieced easily with a knife. Next, comes the laborious process of removing the extra pith from the inside of the peel and chopping the outer peel. In order to capture the pectin, the extra pith is cooked in jelly bags with the peel, juice, strawberries and sugar. Time consuming, yes, but well worth it.