February 1, 2018

  Market Notes
February 1, 2018


You can’t have any but at least you will know about them and that’s a start. Mongee stands for incredible and this banana probably is. Only available in Japan (where it is illegal to export bananas to the USA) and only grown at one farm where they only sell 10 individual bananas per week. One banana cost about $6.00. What so special about these super sweet organically grown banana? You can eat the skin. Yes, that’s right, the fruit is completely edible. Using a method called “Freeze Thaw Awakening” DNA is manipulated to allow growth in cooler climates and as such the banana has no natural predators. The Mongee banana is a result of a second growth where the fruit is tricked into thinking it needs to catch up so they produce a thin, edible, sweet lettuce like skin. The first successful trial of this banana was in November of 2017. So, for all you global foodies, the next time you find yourself in the Okayama Prefecture in Japan, head toward D&T Farm and get in line.


Yellowfoot and hedgehog now take the place of the meaty button and flower chanterelle mushrooms. Both varieties are domestically foraged in the Pacific Northwest. Delicate black trumpet are also available from the same foraging area. Bluefoot are in stock, imported from Bulgaria. Beautiful shi-itake mushrooms are available in three sizes and we also have Shimeji mushrooms with brown or white caps. On the cultivated side we have Piopinni, Nameko, King Trumpet and Enoki. Can’t decide and want to experiment? Try one of our wild mushroom mixes. Let us make one for you or you can decide the varieties you like. The mix box is six pounds and we pack three varieties, two pounds each. On the tuber side we offer domestic black truffles from Oregon and Washington and imported black truffles from Spain.


The yellow tomatoes survived the freeze and product is coming on. So are reds. Grown and shipped out of central Florida, yellow are packed in a heavy 25# case with 80 cases on a pallet. Smaller sizes (6×6, 6×7) easier to come by than larger sizes(5×6). At the dock things are good. Asparagus have good arrivals and the price is way down. Snow peas and snap peas are pretty and cheap. Baby veg are a little tight. Please call for pricing and availability on baby squash, French beans and baby carrots.


One of my earliest appearances is estimated to have been around 3400 BC. My first sighting was in Tehuacan that is south of Mexico. Almost immediately someone was spotted me in Peru. Today I am primarily cultivated in South America and Europe. For the most part I am a long trailing or climbing plant, but a few of my relatives do the bushy thing. Yellow flowers and large shallowly lobed leaves protect me from the elements and snoopy passers-by. As a member of the cushaw family I have a smooth, nutty taste that is well complimented by cinnamon or nutmeg. By category, winter is in my name, but I am harvested during two other seasons. When harvested in summer I am tender and best suited for stewing, boiling, or baking in a pie. When I am harvested in autumn it is often fashionable to split me in half, parboil me (yooouch!), then stuff and bake me. My second harvest yields good meat for jams, preserves, or pickles. I am best when 10 to 12 inches long and about 5 inches in diameter. With a body shaped like a pear, my pale, tan, smooth skin peels easily to reveal my beautiful, finely textured, sweet, orange flesh (stay away if my skin is tinted green; it means I’m not yet ready). I am a great source of beta-carotene I am also a good source of Iron Riboflavin along with vitamins A & C. Most likely you will enjoy me in one form or another throughout the winter season.

Answer To Last Week’s Quiz:…PEARS…Congrats To All Winners

Call 908-789-4700 –Lisa or Richard– Fax 908-789-4702
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Culinary Specialty Produce, Inc., 2015

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