Monthly Archives: October 2011

10th Fruit Delivery week of October 17, 2011

This week’s fruits are

Crimson grapes

Valencia oranges


Ambrosia apples

Red Bartlett pears

Asian pears

Biodynamic Limes

Crimson grapes are from Sogomonian (Three Sisters), Fresno, CA. Crimson Seedless Grapes are fast becoming the preferred red seedless grape in supermarkets worldwide for their exceptional shelf life. They have a crisp, firm texture and a mouthwatering, juicy interior. Take advantage during the fall months and enjoy plump grapes at their prime. Organic Crimson Seedless Grapes are preferred for their superiority in taste, and benefits to health, as well as the environment. There are plenty of ways to serve these delectable bunches, frozen, juiced, tossed on salads or cheese platters, set in jelly, or served along with your favorite entrée.

The Valencia oranges are from Sespe Creek Organic, Fillmore, CA. The Valenciaorange is one of the sweet oranges used for juice extraction. It is a late-season fruit, and therefore a popular variety when the navel oranges are out of season.Most American oranges come from Florida & California. Due to differences in soil and climate, Florida & California oranges – even those of the same variety – vary in color, texture, and juiciness. California oranges usually have full orange color (due to a drier climate and cooler nights) and thicker skin than Florida oranges. Valencias are thin skinned, nearly seedless and excellent juicers. If you can use the oranges within a few days, store in a cool place outside the fridge. Otherwise, store in a plastic bag in the crisper drawer and enjoy as a snack, They can also be used as part of the juice in pancake or French toast batters. Use orange juice with soy sauce, sesame oil, salt and pepper for a quick salad vinaigrette.

Kiwi are from Zespri in New Zealand. The kiwifruit, often shortened to kiwi in many parts of the world Kiwifruits owe their name to a bird, a brown flightless bird and New Zealand’s national symbol. In many regions of Europe, North America and South America, kiwi fruits are generally referred to as “kiwi” Nutrition-wise, kiwi fruits contain about as much potassium as bananas, and also contain 1.5 times the DRI for Vitamin C. It is also rich in Vitamins A and E, and its black seeds can be crushed to produce kiwi fruit oil, which is very rich in Alfa-Linoleic Acid (an important Omega-3 essential fatty acid).

Ambrosia apples are from Golden Harbor Orchards, Orondo, WA. Ambrosia is well named; it is a delight to look at, to touch, to bite into and to savor. The skin is smooth, with a bright, almost iridescent pink blush over a creamy white background. The flesh is creamy, tender, and juicy, with a very fine, crisp texture. It is a sweet, low-acid apple, with a pleasing aroma. The Ambrosia is a very civilized, refined apple, destined to be loved by connoisseurs of the good life everywhere.

Red Bartlett pears are grown at Acadia Vineyards, a 70 Acre organic pear orchard and vineyard in Underwood, WA. Vivid red in color and aromatic, the Red Bartlett pear offers an off-white flesh and a sweet taste and moist texture. Ready to eat when slightly soft to the touch. Handle pears gently: The riper they are, the more easily they bruise.

Asian pears are from Oriana’s Oriental Orchard, a newly certified organic grower this year in Winslow, IL. Asian pears are known by many names, including Japanese pear, Korean pear, and apple pear. They are sweet and juicy, taste like a pear because they are a pear, but are hard and crunchy like an apple. They are ready to eat now, but will store well, and will last for several months when refrigerated.

Biodynamic Limes are grown by Helene and Robert Beck of Beck Grove’s, also known as LaVigne Enterprises, Inc.  Their farm profile  is highlighted in this week’s news. Limes can be kept out at room temperature where they will stay fresh for up to one week. Make sure to keep them away from sunlight exposure since it will cause them to turn yellow and will alter their flavor. Limes can be stored in the refrigerator crisper, wrapped in a loosely sealed plastic bag, where they will keep fresh for about 10-14 days. While they can be kept longer than that, they will begin to lose their characteristic flavor.

A Message From Helene Beck

As founder and principal of LaVigne Enterprises, Inc. (Beck Grove’s), I want consumers to remember my label as a symbol of wonderful tastes and excellent quality. I have merged a long-time interest in multi-cultural cuisine with a passion for nutrition and a lifetime of gourmet cooking into LaVigne products. That, coupled with a commitment to ecology, has contributed to the development of LaVigne’s distinctive line of gourmet foods made entirely from fruits certified organic by CCOF and biodynamic by the prestigious DEMETER Association.

Growing organically and biodynamically creates fruit with dynamic and vibrant flavors. The quality of the soil and its nutrients make a great difference in the flavor of the fruit. Robert and I use only natural fertilizers and traditional organic farming methods to enrich our land. It gives me a great feeling of accomplishment when I hear that our fruit – even though it may look like others – has a quality and taste that leads consumers not only to want more, but to experiment with new textures and tastes.

As people are becoming more aware that organic food offers them a healthier alternative, I feel I contribute in my small way through my farming practices. It is my goal to continue to add nutritional value and taste to all our fruits and have chefs seek out our organic line to enhance their culinary creations. The growing of fine fruits gives me great satisfaction, as I see the results of being in touch with the earth, air, and water.

Remember: Some growers pick their fruit at its prime. As you unpack your box and put your fruit away, take a moment to notice the fruit’s stage of ripeness.


9th Fruit Delivery: week of October 3rd, 2011

Dapple Dandy Pluots are from Goosetail Orchard in Washington.  Pluots are a hybrid of a plum and an apricot and mainly retain the characteristics of a plum. Dapple Dandys are large in size with a mottled, pale green to yellow, red-spotted skin: hence the trademarked name ‘Dinosaur egg’ that you may see in some stores. They have red or pink juicy flesh that’s relatively firm. The Dapple Dandy ripens in late-September and has one of the highest Brix level readings on a refract meter, meaning that it is especially sweet. Keep pluots at 65-70 degrees for the most ideal ripening conditions.

Luscious Pears are grown by Future Fruit in Ridgeway, Wisconsin. This is a cross-parentage pear that is very sweet and aromatic with a hint of butterscotch and honey. They’re not big. They’re not shiny.” But after tasting this pear, people have embraced the Luscious as one of the best tasting pears grown. It’s an excellent dessert pear, and would shine in this lovely, golden Greedy Pudding Pear Cake. Leave pears out at room temperature, and they will ripen in a few days to a week, depending on the maturity when delivered. As the pears ripen they have a golden yellow color with a reddish blush. Luscious pears are to be eaten while still firm. If you choose to hold off the ripening process, the fruit should be refrigerated and will hold three to four weeks. Once ripe, a pear will not last much more than a couple of days, even in the refrigerator. This pear is not as attractive as more ordinary or hybrid pears, but the taste and flavor is extremely Luscious!

Biodynamic Thompson Grapes are grown at Marion Farms near Fresno CA. Thompson grapes are thin-skinned, sweet and juicy, and can be eaten fresh or dried. The frosty look you might find on grape varieties is called bloom, and is a natural protection produced by grapes. These biodynamic grapes are described as having some “ambering” on the skin.  This is an indication of the high sugar content and more intense flavor. Hand-picked at the peak of ripeness and perfection (because grapes do not continue to ripen off the vine, unlike your pears and pluots), store grapes in the refrigerator and rinse them only before you are ready to eat them. Grapes will complement pan-seared chicken dishes; try adding some to the pan, along with your favorite wine, and simmer the grapes until they are heated through.

MacIntosh Apples are grown by Elams Organics in Cawston, British Columbia. MacIntosh apples, which originate in Canada, are a tender and slightly less tart variety. For these reasons, cooking with this apple is limited, but it remains a fine apple for eating fresh. Apples are picked at their peak ripeness so additional ripening really means acceleration in the decaying process (they will become mealy and mushy). Apples should be refrigerated as soon as they are brought home. It is best to keep apples as cold as possible so store them in the back of your refrigerator. If stored well, apples can last for several weeks in the refrigerator.

Pomegranates are grown by Home Grown Cellars near Madera, California.  Pomegranates have a long storage life of approximately two weeks. Don’t worry about the surface mold if you find any, just wipe it off; it should not affect the inside. It is best to store them out of direct sunlight and in a cool place. By storing them in the refrigerator, you extend their storage life up to two months or more. Once peeled, the seeds will last a week or more in the refrigerator and can be frozen for up to a year. Once juiced, pomegranates will last about five days under refrigeration, and up to six months frozen. Pomegranate seeds are popular in Mexico this time of year, as they are used as the final garnish in a popular dish, Chiles en Nogada, that is traditionally served around Mexican independence day, which was just a few weeks ago.

The Hass Avocados come to you this week from Calavo Growers in Mexico. Avocados are sodium- and cholesterol-free and have only five grams of fat per serving; most of it is the monounsaturated kind. Store at cool room temperature until they reach peak ripeness. When the fruit yields to gentle finger pressure, and in the case of the Hass variety, when the skin darkens from green to black, it is ready to be eaten.