Memorial Day Weekend Picks
- Watermelon: Seedless Watermelon from Florida and Mexico has been eating great and retailers are promoting it on sale.
- Sweet Corn: Florida grown Sweet Corn is abundant here in May and stores are selling it at deep discounts to bring you to their store. Go ahead and enjoy this picnic favorite.
- Vidalia Sweet Onions: These fresh onions are great for burgers and dogs when raw and sweeten up when grilled!
- Greenhouse Beefsteak Tomatoes: Broad, red and perfect for slicing for your sandwiches and burgers, Hothouse Tomatoes are the way to go until summer vine ripes are ready.
If they look fresh and are affordable to you go ahead enjoy these this week. All are poised to enter their peak season in June (stay tuned!).
- Strawberries, Blueberries, Blackberries, Raspberries
- Grapes from California or Mexico
- Cantaloupes, Honeydew
- Cherries and Apricots from California
Peak Season Best Flavor
Rhubarb = Spring! And even though we’re about to begin thinking summer picnic and BBQs, Rhubarb is now in peak season from local harvest here in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast through late June. It is also available from large Rhubarb farms in the Pacific Northwest.
Recipe Hack! Easy Strawberry-Rhubarb CrispBuy a pack of your favorite Apple Crisp Mix, but use fresh strawberries and rhubarb instead of apples. Chop 1 bunch of Rhubarb (2 cups), then top and halve 1 lb of Strawberries (3 cups). Prepare the recipe the rest of the way according to the instructions on the pack and you’re good to go! Delicious!
Recipe: Homemade Rhubarb SauceWhat’s one of the most versatile things to do with fresh Rhubarb? Make a sauce! Sweet-tart Rhubarb Sauce is perfect for topping oatmeal, cottage cheese, yogurt, pound cake, toast, bagels, or ice cream. Fantastic! Here’s the general recipe:
- chop Rhubarb into 1/2 wide pieces, enough for 4-5 cups
- put chopped Rhubarb into a large heavy saucepan
- top Rhubarb with 1/2 cup sugar (or 1 full cup if you like it sweeter)
- add 1 heaping tablespoon of Minute Tapioca
- stir the above raw ingredients then allow to sit for 15 min., then stir again
- simmer for 15 min. over Medium heat, do not allow to bubble over
- simmer for another 10 min. steadily reducing the heat from toward Low
- cool at room temp. then refrigerate
Green Squash (Zucchini)
Peak Season Value Priced
- Preheat cleaned grill to High
- Wash, pad dry, then trim the ends
- Slice the Zucchini for grilling, ¼” to ½” thickness is ideal
- Rounds cut across the zucchini on the bias, or
- Strips sliced the length of the zucchini
- Toss in a mixing bowl with 2-3 tbsp olive oil
- Season with coarse salt and black pepper (or your favorite grill seasoning), retoss to coat
- Grill for a couple of minutes on each side until grill marks are well defined
Green Squash Tips
- Select Zucchini that is firm, and is free from soft spots or open cuts.
- Very large and thick Zucchini can have more mature seeds inside, making it less desirable in cooking yet fine for baking Zucchini Bread.
- High heat for a short period of time – like grilling or stir-frying – can help you avoid a “mushy texture” when preparing Zucchini.
- Here are some interesting Zucchini Recipes.
Peak Season Best Flavor
Fresh Spinach that is full size, the kind sold on the wet veg case of the produce department in bunches with the stem, is in season right now from both large farms in California and local farms in New Jersey and other areas throughout the Mid-Atlantic! The NJ Spinach is more of a “savoy” variety with dark-green leaves that are curlier than what is typically grown in California.
- Select Bunched Spinach that is free from slimy or yellow leaves.
- Store it in the crisper of your fridge wrapped in a damp paper towel or in a plastic bag.
- Be sure to thoroughly rinse bunched Spinach with cold water to remove sand and dirt.
- Pat it or spin it dry before use in tossed salads so the dressing clings and salad stays airy. No drying is needed after washing if you’ll be using it in cooking or juicing.
Recipe: Greek Spinach & Mint SaladHearty-textured local Spinach, brightness from fresh Mint and rich tanginess from the Feta make this salad a delight!
- Wash ½ bunch of Curly Spinach
- Cut off the stems
- Stack the leaves, slice into thick ribbons, split ribbons
- Wash a handful of fresh Mint
- Remove stems from Mint leaves, chop leaves finely
- Toss Spinach and Mint with 3 tbsp Greek dressing
- Top salad with 2 tbsp crumbled Feta cheese and ½ Vidalia Sweet Onion, sliced