Produce report: February 17
The best in-season produce and insider tips from the fresh experts at New World.
FRESH IN: Plums are the star of the show this week and there are loads of them in supermarkets now. A range of varieties including Fortune, Omega and Black Doris are all going strong thanks to the hot weather in Hawke’s Bay and Central Otago. Actually, the supermarket right now is a shrine to all types of stonefruit as harvesting from the South Island ramps up (well, apart from dwindling stocks of end-of-season cherries).
Talking of volume, new-season Royal Gala apples are plentiful too and they are excellent buying. Not too big for lunchboxes either. Eggplants are good quality and affordable too and caulis have lowered again in price. Tomatoes and leafy salad greens are excellent buying. “Sweetcorn continues to be a deliciously affordable buy, grab an ear or two and make a Mexican inspired corn salad or try some flavoured butters to go with your tender corn cobs. Here’s a top tip – when buying, look for blemish free corn husks with fully developed ears – a sign of freshness,” says New World Fresh Expert Brigit Corson.
LOOK FOR: the first of the quinces and figs at farmers’ markets. In the supermarket, the arrival of oval, smooth-skinned kiwiberries to slice to top pavs and cakes. “Our deliciously small kiwiberries from the Bay of Plenty are available in-store now and if you haven’t tried these tiny morsels yet make sure you grab a few from your local New World. Unlike the larger kiwifruit these hardy kiwis aren’t fuzzy and are the perfect fit for any lunchbox,” says Brigit. You can expect to see new season kumaras arriving in the coming weeks. “New World’s beautiful kumaras are mainly grown in Dargaville and Kaitaia. New season red kumaras are in-store now and gold and orange kumaras will be cropping up in the next few weeks,” says Brigit.
MOVING ON: Although available all year, typically telegraph cucumbers are in shorter supply from February until April.