THE YEAR OF THE ROOSTER
The Chinese New Year is upon us and this year it is the year of the rooster. The rooster is said to be symbolic of fidelity and punctuality. This makes great sense because we certainly do not know of a single rooster to ever cheat on their partner or be late for the morning cock-a-doodle-doo. So, good for the rooster, providing lessons we can all learn from. January 28, 2017 is the official first day of the celebrations that will go on for at least sixteen days. It is spring time in China and the New Year coincides with the Chinese Spring Festival. Here in the USA we celebrate this holiday due to the joys a diverse population gives us and as an excuse for a celebration to help us get through the dreary winter. Then, of course, there is the food. Foods are prepared and eaten differently during this period to provide good wishes for the New Year. The more dumplings you eat during the celebration the more wealth you will have during the year. A fish dish is not to be finished to symbolize surplus in the year ahead. Spring roll consumption brings prosperity as they look like bars of gold. When it comes to your needs including lemon grass, baby and full size bok choy, gai-lon, broccoli, chives, dumpling wrappers and nappa cabbage, we’ve got you covered at non-holiday prices.
AND THEN THERE WAS RAIN AND RAIN AND RAIN
Wonder why no one is complaining about a California drought this year? That’s because there is not one. Both the cars and the veggies in Southern California and Yuma, Arizona don’t know whether to drink or swim. Radishes have no tops. Head lettuce molds before it get to east coast destinations. Strawberries are melting. Equipment can’t get into the fields for citrus picking or row crop harvest. Lots of greens have been affected and if the humidity rises to 50% or higher, the mold kicks in. This is trouble for all mesclun components. So it’s day to day on availability and quality. Growers and packers are doing the best they can. Rain is expected into early next week from the bay area to Los Angeles. Looks like you can’t have your water and drink it. Didn’t someone once say “Let them drink wine?” If not, we just did. Let the aquifers and reservations fill, at least we will have it for next season.
NEW PRODUCE QUIZ – – WHO AM I???
Don’t call me Spud! I am a card carrying member of the Convolvulaceae family and deserve your respect. I’m as old as the hills, and your species has only traced us back 12,000 years, (we knew the remains in the Peruvian caves were a clue), but we are a lot more than prehistoric Dino food. We are native to Central America. It was that lowly pirate Columbus who sacked us and stole away to Europe, his home, not ours. As far as the interlude in Polynesia goes, we’re still not talking. By the 15th Century, I was well known in China and the Philippines. By the 16th Century, I had become established in the southern United States. Above ground, I am a long creeping stem that can grow up to 16 feet and produce leaves that are often used in place of spinach. Although I have over 400 relatives, we are usually classified into two different categories, either firm and dry, or soft and moist. Always cooked and usually consumed whole as a starch, our amazing sugar content (3%-6%), inspires additional uses in cakes, pies, breads, puddings, marmalades, cookies and muffins. I have a thin edible skin that can be rough and can be white, yellow, orange, red, or purple. My flesh ranges in color from white to yellow to orange. The darker my color the greater my content of Vitamin A, of which I am an excellent source. I am also a good source of potassium and vitamin C.
Answer To Last Week’s Quiz…ALLSPICE…Congrats To All Winners
Call 908-789-4700 –Lisa or Richard– Fax 908-789-4702
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Culinary Specialty Produce, Inc., 2015