March 12, 2015

cul  Market Notes
  March 12, 2015

Our baby lettuces along with their component buddies have all had a swinging time down south, but all vacations must come to an end. For the greens that means about two weeks. Of course some must leave early for college or new jobs and that is to be expected. In many fields the teen spinach has left early and will remain scarce for two weeks. As the replanting ceases on the southern turf, northern lands are right in synch with spring harvest. For many families the weekend of the 28th and 29th they’ll be loading up the truck and moving to the northern valley. Monday, March 30th is first day for processing in the Salinas Valley while late loading will continue for a week after down south. Orders for that final week will need to be placed a few days in advance. We are seeing components such as kale, chard and arugula, tighten up a bit but nothing that would raise price or create allocation.

Fiddlehead Ferns from the west continue to increase in volume, but it will be another week to ten days before the flood gates really open. Other spring forage items are also available in small quantity. They include Nettles and Miners Lettuce (Claytonia). The young Claytonia is not nearly developed as the mature plant and we recommend waiting a few weeks for the full plant to develop. Orchard Morels are on the Market for reasonable pricing and as we mentioned before, this year’s crop is pretty clean but there will be sand. Prices and availability vary from day to day in these early stages so it is best to allow some leeway when ordering. Orders under sixty pounds will ship FedEx. Over 50 pounds we can save some dollars with commercial airlines.

It’s all systems go with yellow fingerlings. We are operating on all distribution points. This includes Los Angeles, Bakersfield, Northern and Southern Colorado, Florida, and Pennsylvania. Creamers are available through LA and Florida. Organic yellow fingerlings are available through Colorado and Bakersfield. Marble (one-bite) potatoes are available through Bakersfield. Organic Russets are available through Colorado and Bakersfield. Purple A’s available through Los Angeles. Masquerades, which are looking great, are available through southern Colorado. Please contact your Culinary rep for prices and delivery options.

Don’t leaf me out, because I’m the main event. Well, okay there is the fruit, but you can’t eat it. Maybe you will use its bumpy peel for concentrated aromatic oils in curry, or for some zest in your “jungle soup” (gkaeng bpah), but that’s it. I’m what you want! I’m the bay leaf of the Far East. I am a citrus sub-species of the family peapeda. I am a lovely dark green with a glossy sheen. My leaves (often pounded into a jelly or mixed with hot chili paste) grow in couplets, smaller on top, broader on the bottom, and range from one half inch to over three inches long. I’m not an easy pick as my growth is slow and you will fight thorny branches to reach me. In tropical Thailand my tree is a fixture in every countryside home. Often seen out on the town with lemon grass, together we create a mean dtom yam, and often we don’t get home ‘til dawn. It’s my scent that the public craves making me essential in soups, salads, curries, stir-fries, broth or stew. I am a secret ingredient in many fish dishes and I provide an excellent texture, and great presentation. Cut me into slivers to release my seriously tempting aromatic citrus flavor. The more you cut me the stronger I get, until I eventually dominate everything I surround. I also have many household uses. My uses include invigorating shampoos, insect repellents, stain removers, as well as being a tooth and gum strengthener. So if you can find me, don’t leaf me behind. Get it?

Answer To Last Quiz….Garbanzo Bean or Chic Peas……Congrats To All Winners
Call 908-789-4700 –Lisa, Mark or Richard– Fax 908-789-4702
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Culinary Specialty Produce, Inc., 2015

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