Locally-grown fresh produce is in abundance at your local Fruit and Veg shop this week, promising a colourful summer and cool culinary delights like frozen desserts, bright salads, refreshing cocktails and light meals.
Sweet and juicy Pineapples from Sunshine Coast and papayas from Innisfail are must-buys this week. Both are great in quality and reasonably priced. While grilled pineapples make a delicious side, Papaya bars make a great snack for a summery get-together.
Cool nights and warm days in Northern New South Wales have produced some luscious Blueberries. Add these nutrient bombs to scones, chia pudding, and cakes – or blend them with lime, sugar and ginger beer for a magical Moscow Mule mocktail. Other Berries such as Strawberries, Blackberries and Raspberries are in fair supply, too. Looking to include fibre rich fruits in your diet? Creamy Avocados and Bananas to the rescue! Add them in smoothies, sandwiches or whip up a soft and light Banana Avocado bread to pair with a cup of coffee or tea.
Wonderful Watermelons and aromatic Rockmelons from Bowen represent great quality and value right now. For a fun take on yummy Melons, cut the fruit into triangles and insert a Paddle Pop stick into the rind – easy to clean, non-sticky hands and popular among tykes. The new season harvest of stone fruit is gaining momentum. Early varieties of Peaches and Nectarines are already hitting the shelves and as we move closer to summer, expect large-sized Fruit with more juice content. Other top Fruity picks include crispy Apples, Pears, red-fleshed Grapefruit, Oranges, Mandarins, and Lemon and Limes.
In Vegetables, Broccoli, Cabbage, Cauliflower, and Asian Vegetables coming from Gatton and Victoria are in good supply. Ideal for stir-fries, these gorgeous Veggies pair well with chicken, pork, or seafood.
Supercharge your meals with Bundaberg-grown Sweet Potatoes that are in abundance right now – think baked fries, sweet potato blondies and loaded Potatoes. Corn and Capsicum are both in low supply due to excessive heat, but Tomatoes are easing in prices due to stable supply. If your Tomatoes aren’t ripe, leave them at room temperature away from the sunlight; once ripe, store them in the fridge.
For vibrant salads, Lebanese Cucumbers and Iceberg Lettuce are great value buys this week. Throw them together with Cherry Tomatoes and a little mayo and you’ve got yourself lunch in a flash. Radish, Parsnips, Green Beans, Mushrooms, Button Squash, Celery, Eggplants, and Zucchini are all plentiful and good eating.
Packed with folate, blushing Beetroot is in plentiful supply from Boonah. Select small to medium-sized bunches with fresh green leaves. You can roast whole Beets or add raw slices to salads. Seasonal favourites such as Asparagus, Fennel, English Spinach and Bok Choy also continue to be well supplied.
This week’s hero is the juicy Kensington Pride Mango from the Northern Territory. A medium-sized yellow to orange Fruit tinged with a pink blush, the Kensington Pride Mango has a sweet and tangy flavour with rich, juicy, and succulent flesh. Nothing beats a cold Mango on a hot day! The tropical smell is a good indication that a Mango is ready to eat, but be sure to look for firm, ripe fruit that gives slightly to the touch. Store unripe Mangoes at room temperature, but not in direct sunlight. Once they’re ripe, you store them in your fridge crisper for up to three days.