Adventures of a self-taught home cook By Katherine Weber My children’s first memory of me using an oven is the time I “almost burned down the house” attempting to toast tortilla chips under the broiler. They caught fire and when I opened the door, flames leapt out. After a few shrieks, I pulled out the [...]
How to throw your company’s annual shindig without losing your mind By Miriam Wolf So you’ve been tasked with organizing your holiday work party. No problem: Just throw some pretzels in a bowl, bust open a few boxes of wine, crank up your iTunes, and you’re all set, right? Not so fast. The office party [...]
Fruit can surprise even The FruitGuys By Miriam Wolf We all know that the fruit that comes through the doors of The FruitGuys for delivery to our clients is very special—hand chosen for flavor, uniqueness, and appearance. But this pear is more than special—it’s one in a million. Miguel Ascencio, Receiver and Quality Control for [...]
Delicious figs bring summer’s sweetness to fall By Stephanie Klassen On the West Coast, summer tends to linger. Back-to-school sales may cede shelf space to Halloween candy, but even as the days grow shorter, golden afternoons beckon, encouraging weekend picnics and last-chance outdoor dinners. Now is the time to make the most of the autumn [...]
Navigating workplace friendships: from BFFs to frenemies By Miriam Wolf Many of us spend almost half our waking hours at work. If we have demanding jobs, we can end up spending more time with our officemates than with our partners or our kids. So it makes a lot of sense that forming friendships at work [...]
How to Help You and Your Family Stay Sane By Miriam Wolf As the relaxing torpor of August shades into September, family schedules can get crazy. School starts, and with it full slates of after-school activities and sports. Workloads at the office increase as laid-back summer turns into get-‘er-done fall. Social lives heat up as [...]
Ground Rules to Avoid Office Kitchen Conflicts By Miriam Wolf Bringing your lunch to work each day just makes sense: you can control your calories, the quality of your food, and your budget. But whether you’ve got a crisp salad or slice of last night’s lasagna, you’ll need a refrigerator in which to store it [...]
PJs, Ping-Pong, and Potluck, Oh My! By Melissa Nguyen Pajamas, ping-pong, and righteous potlucks—if you wandered into any of The FruitGuys’ five offices last month, you’d have gotten a good taste of why employees say working at The FruitGuys is such a blast. In July 2014, The FruitGuys celebrated its third annual Spirit Week—a five-day [...]
How to Make Stone Fruit Jams and Butters By Linda Corso One of the best ways to preserve the flavors of summer is by making jams and fruit butters. There’s something wonderful about a fresh apricot jam sandwich come December. Or use it to make thumbprint cookies for the end of the year holidays. Jams [...]
Fruit Can Nourish a Face, Scour a Sink, Even Shine Your Shoes By Rebecca Taggart There is more to fruit than meets the taste buds. The vitamins, phytochemicals, and fruit acids that make fruit so healthy can also be effective ingredients in homemade beauty products, natural cleaners, and other household mixtures. We’ve scoured the web, hit [...]
How to Clean Dirt Versus Germs By Maggie McLain You’ve long suspected it, and modern science has confirmed it: Your office is dirty. A study of 105 offices found high levels of bacteria on phones, keyboards, door knobs, microwave handles, the water fountain, water faucets, and in restrooms and office break rooms, according to the International [...]
More conversations from inside a minivan for hire By Lutzka Zivny Lutzka Zivny drives for Lyft, an app-based ride-sharing service in San Francisco. She’s been collecting the inspiring, funny, touching, and sometimes bizarre conversations that occur in her minivan since she started driving for Lyft last year. Here is the second installment of her occasional [...]
There’s always time for breakfast – if you eat it at the office By The Lunch Lady The Lunch Lady is not dogmatic about breakfast. The Lunch Lady believes that if you eat breakfast and it works for you – i.e., you are maintaining your weight and health – that’s awesome. And if you’re not eating [...]
Admins are the Heart and Brains of the Workplace By Miriam Wolf If you want to get the most work done and find out what’s really going on in any company, don’t go to the boss. No, in most organizations, the powers behind the thrones are the administrative professionals. With job duties that range from [...]
How Office Design Can Influence Your Health By Sandra Smit Take a closer look at your workspace. Does it have natural light? Is the floor plan open or do you have a private space? How often do you get up from your desk? Office design can help or hurt your efforts to be healthy in [...]
How to Stock Your Desk Drawer for Weight Loss Success By The Lunch Lady I recently made a simple change to my workday eating routine that has helped me achieve my weight goals—and improved my life. Before, I had been congratulating myself on how disciplined I was about my food during the workweek: I always [...]
Timeline of our favorite berry By Heidi Lewis Today’s strawberry, Fragaria ananassa, with its large, practically perfect berries is the culmination of selective breeding going back centuries to when strawberries were tiny, rare, and found only at the peak of summer. Strawberries are mentioned in works by Virgil and Ovid, yet they made no appearance [...]
Slow Cookers Solve the Lunch Problem By The Lunch Lady The Lunch Lady sees so many of you heedlessly going out to buy lunch every day, overspending on both money and calories. This is concerning to The Lunch Lady. She wants you to spend your hard-earned disposable income on pedicures, green fees, or shiny new [...]
By Rebecca Taggart For me, the word ergonomics has always called to mind carpal tunnel syndrome and back pain. But what does it mean exactly? The science of ergonomics finds the best fit between a person and the equipment she or he uses to maintain health and promote productivity. When it comes to our desks [...]
Conversations from Inside a Minivan By Lutzka Zivny This month, we begin an occasional series chronicling life in various workplaces. This month, we hear from Lutzka Zivny, who drives for Lyft, an app-based ride-sharing service, in San Francisco. She’s been collecting the inspiring, funny, touching, and sometimes bizarre conversations that occur in her minivan since [...]
Coffee Now Considered Health Food By Miriam Wolf Oh coffee, is there anything you can’t do? You taste great. You enhance our productivity at work. And you may even be a veritable health-giving elixir that could stave off Alzheimer’s and reduce the risk of developing cancer and diabetes. For most of us, coffee is an [...]
Layered lunches in a See-Through Jar By Miriam Wolf The Mason jar—that humble, old-fashioned glass canning jar—has taken the place of the Bento Box as the latest lunchtime accessory. And why not? Using a quart-size jar as a container for salad is a great idea. The classic lines of the canning jar are the perfect [...]
Valentine’s Day Treats That Use Fruit to Say “I Love You” By Miriam Wolf Valentine’s Day may have been co-opted by greeting card companies, chocolate makers, and the romantic love-crowd, but there are so many different kinds of love that I’d argue for a more inclusive approach to this holiday. There’s the overwhelming, almost visceral [...]
By Heidi Lewis 3, 2, 1 – Happy New Year! When the clock strikes 12 a.m. on January 1st every year, it marks a new beginning. Conversations turn to resolutions and remembering to write the new date. Of course, there are calendars other than Gregorian and many different ways to mark the beginning of a [...]
Daikon is the tiny cubed white vegetable in miso soup. In Punjabi cuisine, it is called “mooli,” and in Eastern Europe it is “white radish,” often served with sour cream dressings. An extremely versatile vegetable that takes well to being cooked, pickled, or eaten raw.
Preparation TipsPeel and slice, or dice. A Japanese secret to keeping daikon white while cooking is to boil it in the water used to wash rice.
Storage TipsKeep daikon in a plastic bag in the fridge. This root veggie is still good even if it gets a little limp. Lasts for two weeks.
This herb has more uses than just keeping vampires away and is highly partisan – there are those for it, and those against it. Garlic is a close cousin to the onion, shallots, and leeks, and is an elixir, deterrent, protector, and medicine. Its distinct, pungent flavor brightens up any stir-fry, pasta, or roasted veggie [...]
Preparation TipsPeel garlic right before it is to be used. Use the flat edge of a kitchen knife to crush the clove; the skin will then separate easily. A Garlic Peeler, essentially a rubberized roll that provides sticky contact for the clove's papery skin, is also handy.
Storage TipsFresh garlic may be stored for up to two months in a cool, dark place, in an open container away from other foods. Individual cloves, once they are broken away from the rest of the bulb, can be used for about a week.
Red potatoes are thin-skinned, firm, and they hold up in many recipes. The thin skin means they don’t need to be peeled; enjoy with the peel on to reap more nutritional benefits, including fiber, vitamins, and anthocyanins.
Preparation TipsBoil in skins, cool, and use in salads or glaze with butter. Also excellent quartered and roasted with olive oil, garlic, salt, and herbs.
Storage TipsPotatoes should be stored in a cool, dark place, not the refrigerator. Organic potatoes have not been treated with any sprout retardants.
By Heidi Lewis Lots of magic going on out there this time of year. It’s a veritable traffic jam of elves, animated snowmen, flying reindeer, and fairies. The Fruit Fairy has been promoting her “Fruit not Candy” campaign using some rather mischievous methods. If you haven’t seen the news coverage of the Fruit Fairy’s pranks, [...]
To get to the tasty center, chestnuts need to be peeled by way of boiling, roasting, or even microwaving till the leathery shell cracks away and the inner papery skin can be removed.
Preparation TipsHow To Roast Fresh Chestnuts
Storage TipsTo keep your chestnuts fresh, place in a ventilated bag in the crisper of your refrigerator or freeze for later use.
Six Changes to Wellness Programs Under ObamaCare By Heather Boerner Lunchtime yoga. Health fairs. Flu shot clinics. Fresh fruit and vegetables in the break room. You do right by your employees. But what effect will the Affordable Care Act, going into effect in 2014, have on your company wellness program? It could mean more stringent [...]
Stop Obsessing About What Not to Eat and Learn to Cook Instead By Mary Risley Now is the time for Americans to STOP denying themselves certain foods and instead concentrate on adding a variety of real foods to our everyday diet. Here are the facts: America is one of the richest countries in the world; [...]
By Heidi Lewis Gemütlich––[gəˈmyːtlɪç] adj., having a feeling or atmosphere of warmth and friendliness; cosy. The first sparkle of hard frost and the chill that grips us this month triggers thoughts of cozying up by the hearth of a little cottage somewhere. Maybe in your imagination, it’s a Hobbit house or a Thomas Kinkade bungalow. [...]
What fruit has the vitamin C of an orange, the potassium of half a banana, and the fiber of a half-cup of bran flakes? Hint: It’s furry. Answer: Kiwi. Enjoy kiwis by peeling and slicing, or simply cut latitudinally and scoop out green (or yellow) flesh with a spoon.
Preparation TipsA great way to eat a kiwi is to cut it cross the middle so that each half is in the shape of a small cup, and then just use a little spoon to scoop it out.
One of The FruitGuys’ favorites! Named for Satsuma province, Japan, satsuma mandarins are seedless and super easy to peel and eat. They have a “zipper” skin that can often look bumpy and feel soft. But don’t judge this book by its cover – it’s a special sweet treat of the season!
Storage TipsSatsumas can be stored at room temperature for a couple of weeks or refrigerated for up to several weeks. The skin is supposed to be soft, pliable, “airy,” and look puffy. Don’t let the looks of the peel fool you—this is a deliciously sweet-tart mandarin, one of our favorites.
A hybrid developed in 1958 at U.C. Riverside, yellow oro blanco gets its puffy coat from pomelo and sweet spritzy flavor from white grapefruit. Its thick skin and mild, seedless flesh create a nice combo of easy peel and wakeup taste. No snooze button here.
Storage TipsGrapefruit can be stored at room temperature for a week or so, or refrigerated for up to several weeks. Keep out of direct sunlight.
Cabbage is so versatile in the kitchen. Hold a head in your hands and contemplate – simmered, sauteéd, rolled, stuffed, or shredded? Very nutritious with essential minerals and phytochemicals – its overlapping layers hold many curative secrets.
Preparation TipsOvercooking cabbage reduces its nutritional value. Celery, caraway seeds, apples, and pears are tasty complements in cabbage recipes, such as slaws and salads. To use the leaves for stuffing, hit the spine of each leaf with the flat edge of a heavy knife and slip the leaf in half. Simmer the leaves in salted water over low heat. Cook for a few minutes until tender. Dry the leaves on a towel, and use them to roll up rice or leftovers.
Storage TipsStore cabbage in a perforated plastic bag in the fridge. Cabbage is a good keeper and should last up to 10 days. Slice cabbage just before using as it loses nutritional value when exposed to air.
A happy accident! Discovered in a pear orchard in Nelson, New Zealand, in 1986, Taylor’s Gold is thought to be a “sport” (a variety or strain resulting from another variety) of the Comice pear. Sweet and fragrant, with smooth, russeted skin and creamy, rich flesh.
Storage TipsApples should be kept in a cool (below 60/70°F) space away from sunlight and heat, where they will keep for two weeks. Refrigerated apples can last as long as six weeks.
You wouldn’t want to bite into the iridescent precious stone opal, but you would an Opal apple. Hailing from a cross of the Golden Delicious and Topaz apples, the Opal’s sweet-tangy and extra crunchy flesh is hidden behind a bright golden-yellow peel with the slightest hint of russeting near the stem.
Storage TipsApples should be kept in a cool (below 60/70°F) space away from sunlight and heat, where they will keep for two weeks. Refrigerated apples can last as long as six weeks.
Little white turnips, radish-sized. In Japan, they are referred to as Kabura-type turnips. When steamed or sautéed, they are buttery-sweet.
Recipe LinksTokyo Turnip Recipes
Storage TipsStore turnips in a cool, dry, dark place for a week or two. If turnips have greens, remove them before storing turnips and prepare them as you would any cooking greens.
By Heidi Lewis T-day is a red-carpet day for veggies—centerpieces of squash ringed by mums, and soufflés of sweet potatoes. Super veggie duos, like green beans and onions, peas and corn, make grand entrances. Even dessert is veggie-focused—pumpkin pie trumps apple pie for many. For Thanksgiving, fruits let veggies have their day in the limelight. [...]
By Heidi Lewis Yoko Ono and John Lennon met in 1966 at a preview of Yoko’s art show at London’s Indica Gallery. The famous Beatle was intrigued by her conceptual art, including the display of a green apple atop a Plexiglas box. They began a dialog that sparked their relationship. “Placing the apple on a [...]
Thanksgiving Side Dishes from The FruitGuys Staff We asked The FruitGuys staffers to pony up with their favorite Thanksgiving side dishes. And maybe we’re all watching a little too much Netflix, but all the recipes featured a main ingredient with a certain stand-out hue that just so happens to be front and center of a [...]
By Heidi Lewis A herald of winter in many regions is the persimmon. Where the rain or even sleet has begun, the bare persimmon tree, with its orange ornaments, makes a striking silhouette against the grey horizon. These fruits can stand a chill; as the old farmer saying goes, “Persimmons grow where mangos fear to tread.” The common persimmon [...]
Anaheim peppers are versatile, mild chili peppers that can be used to make chile rellenos; stuffed and baked as you would bell peppers; sliced and sautéed (or roasted) and added to sauces, salsas, rice dishes, or stir-frys; minced fresh and added to salads and soups; or stirred in with sour cream as a topping for [...]
Fermentation Can Help Preserve Your Harvest and Your Health By Corinna Andrews Long before canning, before vacuum-sealed packets of tuna, before pasteurization, refrigeration, and other industrial food processing techniques, people used the power of fermentation to preserve their foods. Holes were dug, crocks were filled, and harvests were packed into brine (salty water) for future [...]
Also known as butter beans, these legumes are protein-packed and full of fiber. Remove beans from pods, then peel off the outer skin on each bean. Boil the beans for about 10–15 minutes or until soft and creamy.
Preparation TipsAfter cooking (do not eat lima beans raw), limas may be lightly sautéed in butter or olive oil, or added to soups, salads, casseroles, bean dishes, or succotash.
Storage TipsKeep fresh lima beans in an air-tight bag or container in the refrigerator.
These versatile chili peppers have a little kick to ‘em! They are commonly minced or chopped and used to jazz up salsas, dips, cornbread, and lots of other dishes. Try them stuffed with cheese and baked, or breaded and fried into “jalapeño poppers.” Many people enjoy them pickled. Devotees love them made into jelly. CAUTION: [...]
Recipe LinksJalepeño Pepper Recipes
When the Tomato Harvest is Too Much, Get Creative By Miriam Wolf When every garden in town is exploding with tomatoes and even the Topsy Turvy tomato grower on your patio is producing Sweet 100s faster than you can consume them, it’s time to get creative with your tomato usage. Luckily, tomatoes are the Meryl [...]
Neglected sprigs of this nutrient-rich herb have languished on the sides of plates for decades. This often overlooked green is high in vitamins A and K, and ounce for ounce, it has more than twice the vitamin C (a powerful antioxidant) of an orange. Parsley is abundant in chlorophyll, which provides its well-known breath-freshening power.
Recipe LinksParsley Recipes
Preparation TipsAfter rinsing well and discarding the stems, chop fresh parsley for use in all kinds of salads, salad dressings, soups, veggie juices, smoothies, pasta, pesto, egg dishes, rice dishes, veggie roasts, and more. (And, well, OK—it makes a pretty garnish too.)
Storage TipsWrap parsley stems in a damp paper towel and store in a plastic bag in the fridge for up to a week. Clean, dry, chopped parsley freezes well for later use.
This tropical grass has a lemony scent (hence the name) with just a hint of ginger. Native to India and tropical Asia, lemongrass shines best Southeast Asian cooking, especially Thai-inspired dishes. It also makes a lovely addition to tea (hot or iced).
Recipe LinksLemongrass Recipes
Preparation TipsLemongrass is most commonly chopped in 1– to 2–inch pieces and added to soups, stews, curries, and teas. It can also be minced and used in stir-frys or as a rub for grilled or roasted meats and seafood. Most people prefer to remove pieces of lemongrass before serving (or avoid eating them) as they have a woody texture. If mincing, use just the bottom few inches of the stalks, as they’re the most tender, and will be the least “woody.” Note—the longer lemongrass cooks, the more flavor it imparts.
Storage TipsWrap lemongrass loosely in plastic, and store in the fridge for up to several weeks. It also freezes well—wash and dry thoroughly, chop or mince, and freeze in an airtight container for several months.
These spicy chili peppers have a kick to ‘em! Serranos are one of the most commonly used peppers in Mexican cuisine. Typically hotter than jalapeños, they are ideal for fresh salsa and guacamole, as they are fleshier than many hot peppers, but they also shine in marinades and chilis. CAUTION: Serrano seeds add more heat, [...]
Storage TipsChop and freeze extras for later use.
Need a little kick in your next dish but not fully committed to the full-throttle burn of spicy-hot peppers? A bit longer and narrower than your household jalapeño, thin-skinned shishito peppers originally hail from Japan and are sweeter with an occasional tinge of heat on your tongue.
Preparation TipsShishito peppers are commonly enjoyed as the teaser to a festive feast. No need to pull out the knife – just pan-fry whole, washed peppers with a sprinkling of sea salt and oil in a skillet until light brown spots appear. And if you’d like to join your friends outside instead of being cooped up in the kitchen, toss your shishito peppers on the grill. The searing heat will cook them up quickly.
Storage TipsIf not using right away, store shishito peppers in a plastic bag in the fridge for up to several days. For longer term storage, wash shishitos and let them dry, then chop and freeze in an airtight bag or container.
By Heidi Lewis Luck? Birthright? Know someone who can pull strings at the Ministry of Magic? How lucky are you to be bestowed a dragon’s egg without having to swipe it from an over-protective mama dragon? Dragon fruit—an exotic oblate orb with its lovely dragon scales—grows in tropical regions, such as Mexico, Thailand, Vietnam—even Florida. [...]
Preparation TipsDragon fruit is ripe when it gives slightly to pressure. Slice ripe dragon fruit in half lengthwise. Run a tablespoon between the peel and flesh to separate fruit from skin. Place the fruit on a cutting board and trim off any remnants of the skin, which is not edible. Cube or slice the fruit into bite-sized pieces. Cut fruit may be placed in a bowl or put back into the peel for serving. Eat dragon fruit on its own, add chunks to fruit salads, or puree in smoothies and fruity beverages.
Storage TipsLeftover fruit can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for a few days.
With varieties spanning a plethora of stem and leaf colors, such as Swiss chard, rainbow chard, and red chard, all chard is from the same family and is closely related to beets. Rich in vitamin A and antioxidants, chard can be used just as you would spinach. Its leaves are as succulent as spinach and [...]
Recipe LinksChard Recipes
Preparation TipsChopped chard stalks can be added to onion while sautéing, followed by the tender greens. It is delicious on its own, cooked in a little olive oil with onion and garlic; added to risottos, soups, and frittatas; or used in lasagna, ravioli, or other pasta dishes.
Storage TipsStore in plastic in the crisper drawer; wash right before using.
Spring onions can be mature green onions or immature regular “cooking” onions. Their bulbs can be anywhere from cherry-size to almost full-size. Spring onions are typically milder than regular onions but stronger tasting than green onions.
Preparation TipsUse young spring onions with tender greens as you would green onions; more mature spring onions (larger bulbs, tougher greens) should be trimmed and used as you would regular onions.
Storage TipsStore spring onions in a plastic bag in the crisper drawer of the fridge. They last longer than scallions but will not keep as long as mature, cured onions.
The Easy and Less Easy Way to Your Own Pizzeria By Miriam Wolf For a long time, I dreamed about building an outdoor wood-burning pizza oven. What could be more conducive to outdoor seasonal entertaining than pulling perfectly crisp pizzas, their crusts marked by char, from your very own wood-fired oven on a warm summer’s [...]
Also called Chinese cabbage or pak choi, bok choy is easy to prepare. It is so tender, it can be eaten raw. After rinsing, the stems can be sliced into matchsticks or half moons and the leaves roughly chopped. It is delicious fresh in salads but really shines in Chinese cooking. Bok choy is fabulous [...]
Recipe LinksBok Choy Recipes
Storage TipsWrap unwashed Bok Choy in a paper towel and put it in a plastic bag in the refrigerator. It should last for up to a week.
Pucker up! Sour Cherries are traditionally reserved for pie bakers and jam makers, but give their fresh tart-sweet burst of flavor a try before you cook ‘em up. Nutrient-rich sour cherries have even more health-promoting benefits than their sweet cousins, especially when consumed raw.
Preparation TipsSour cherries are delicious fresh on their own or as a lovely sweet-tart accent to a fruit salad, but some say they shine best in pies, cobblers, jams, chutneys, syrups, and sauces. Brandied cherries are also a favorite among more adventurous types.
Storage TipsStore unwashed cherries in the fridge for 3–5 days loosely wrapped in plastic, or freeze pitted cherries for up to a year in an air-tight container.
Chandlers are big. Big in popularity, big in flavor and big in size. They’re the ones that are big enough to slice for treats like strawberry short cake. Or if you’re short on cake– they stand up pretty well to whip cream.
Storage TipsBerries are picked ripe and should be enjoyed as soon as possible. For overnight storage, they should be refrigerated. But don’t wash them until you’re ready to eat (or freeze) them.
Chantenay probably wouldn’t be offended to be called chubby, cause they are busting at the seams with good nutrients, trace minerals and a bounty of antioxidants.
Recipe LinksTightly seal unwashed carrots in a plastic bag and refrigerate for up to a few weeks. They can also be blanched and frozen.
Preparation TipsWash thoroughly and gently scrub—keep the peel for maximum nutrient benefits. Delicious raw on their own; sliced or grated and added to salads and slaws; or roasted, steamed, stir-fried, grilled, boiled, baked, or braised. And don’t forget about carrot juice and carrot cake.
Delectable squash blossoms are simply the delicate, edible flowers from squash plants, such as zucchini. They are typically available in the summer months, and have a light, floral flavor reminiscent of the squash itself.
Preparation TipsThey are often served as an appetizer—either battered and fried, or stuffed with cheese and sautéed in olive oil. The simplest way to use them is to gently roll them up (keeping them long) and slice them in ribbons to toss with salads, sprinkle on pasta or risotto, or add to quesadillas, eggs, pasta sauces, or soups.
Storage TipsSquash blossoms are extremely perishable and should be used as soon as possible. If you must store them, place them in a paper towel–lined plastic bag in the fridge for a day or two.
Collards are a cabbage species, but in the Acephala (“without a head”) group. Only since its cultivation in America have Collards been distinguished from Kale – before both had been lumped together since ancient Rome into the vital greens department. These milder and smokier greens are fantastic sautéed in onion, garlic and oil, with a [...]
Recipe LinksCollard Greens Recipes
Preparation TipsTrim leaves off of main stem and chop coarsely. Wash thoroughly, swishing in a bowl of water and spin dry. Great sautéed, needs to cook least 20 minutes. As a member of the cabbage family, collards should not be cooking in aluminum cookware.
Storage TipsWrap collards in damp paper towel, store loosely in plastic bag in the fridge. Collard greens keep pretty well, but should be used within 4-5 days.
British journalist Alistair Cooke called cranberry sauce an “unchallengeable American doctrine” of Thanksgiving dinner. Sauce can be prepared in many ways: with orange zest, ginger, cabernet, or sour cream. Each family’s favorite is a pixel in the portrait of our melting pot.
Preparation TipsTo make cranberry sauce cook cranberries in 4:1 water to berries, adding 1/2-1 cup sugar (depending on taste). Cook till soft and mash. Can also be used raw in a relish, by processing with oranges, little sugar, spices and nuts.
Storage TipsFresh cranberries are very hearty, store in a sealed plastic bag for up to two months in the fridge. Be sure to discard any bruised or shriveled berries first.
The Dapple Dandy is a sweet plum-apricot flavored pluot with beautifully dappled skin. These pluots contain fiber and complex sugars for sustained energy, and the taste is amazing.
Storage TipsPluots are a plum-apricot cross. They continue to ripen after picking and should be stored at room temperature, away from sunlight and heat until they give softly to the touch and have a sweet aroma. Once ripe, refrigerate fruit as necessary to prevent spoiling, but cold temperatures may change their texture and taste.
By Heidi Lewis In Hamlet, Shakespeare’s Ophelia dispenses some crazy wisdom in the scene when she hands out flowers and herbs: “There’s rosemary, that’s for remembrance.” Miss O might’ve been referring to one of rosemary’s properties, known since ancient times—its ability to improve memory. Sprigs of rosemary were used as a symbol of remembrance and [...]
Preparation TipsStrip leaves from branches or sprigs by pulling through your fingers in the opposite direction of the leaves. Use whole leaves or chop finely. Branch and all can be tossed into soups or stews. Rosemary is durable in the cooking process, but best added near the end. A good thing to remember.
Storage TipsPlace fresh stems in a jar in the fridge with a bit of water—like flowers in a vase—and place a plastic bag loosely over top. Or wrap stems in a damp paper towel and place the whole bunch in a plastic bag in the fridge.
Rosemary is an evergreen like eucalyptus and pine, and to be ever green requires fortitude and terpenes. This strong medicinal aromatic herb pairs well with roasted veggies and will lift your spirit to boot. Fresh rosemary can help increase circulation and boost the immune system. It is thought to improve digestion and enhance memory. Oh, [...]
Preparation TipsHere are a few of our favorite culinary uses for it: Try adding rosemary sprigs to roasted potatoes and other veggies; include in pasta sauces, dressings, and soups; sprinkle over garlic bread or fresh pizza dough with a little sea salt; add to omelettes and other egg dishes; mix into polenta or risotto.
Storage TipsPlace fresh rosemary (stem end down) in a jar in the fridge with a bit of water—like flowers in a vase—and place a plastic bag loosely over top. Or wrap stems in a damp paper towel and place bunch in a plastic bag in the fridge.
This tender green falls into the “wild-harvested green” or “edible weed” category, although the lamb’s-quarters found in FruitGuys cases is always farm-cultivated. Lamb’s-quarters tastes a lot like spinach, and can fill in for spinach in most recipes, although it’s a bit more tender and has a lovely “wild” side, flavor-wise.
Preparation TipsRemove any tough stems (tender stems are fine to eat). Use it fresh in salads, steam, or toss in at the very end of a sauté (they cook very quickly).
Storage TipsStore unwashed in a plastic bag in the fridge.
Peaches, Cherries, & Plums Are Packed with Flavor and Nutrition By Rebecca Taggart The sweet smell of peaches at farmer’s markets heralds the official arrival of summer. Stone fruit season is here! Nothing captures the golden light of summer like the varied hues of apricots and nectarines and nothing expresses summer’s voluptuousness like plums and [...]
Kitchen Gadgets to Wrangle Summer Fruit By Miriam Wolf Summer’s bounty of fruit brings out the intrepid pioneer wife in all of us. When cherries go down to a buck a pound and ripe wild berries perfume vacant lots, we dream of canning, pie baking, and dehydrating fruit to hold on to that summer feeling [...]
By Heidi Lewis There’s a big fat tick-tock on the Earth’s clock this week. Those of you wearing stone sundials on your wrists will know that the summer solstice is upon us. The ancients knew that when the sunrise glanced off the heel stone at Stonehenge, it was time to party. And the moderns do [...]
Similar to the Red Beauty, the Black Beaut is a Santa Rosa style round plum. This plum has deep dark – almost black skin with bright red flesh.
Storage TipsPlums continue to ripen after picking. They should be stored at room temperature, away from sunlight and heat until they give softly to the touch and have a sweet aroma. Once ripe, refrigerate plums as necessary to prevent spoiling, but cold temperatures may change their texture and taste.
Walla Walla onions are so sweet sweet. In 1900, a French solider named Peter Pieri settled in Walla Walla, Washington, from Corsica, Spain, with a few onion seeds in his pocket. He made the onion famous, and the onion made Walla Walla a crossword staple.
Storage TipsDry onions should be stored at room temperature in a dry location and out of direct sunlight, like the kitchen counter or cupboard, for up to one month.
Carrots were not always orange. Throughout the ages they grew in many colors including purple and white. It was the Dutch, whose patriotic allegiance to the House of Orange (the Dutch Royal family), propagated the bright orange variety that is commonplace today. Closely related to fennel and parsley, the carrot is an aromatic vegetable. Its [...]