The French called the tomato the pomme d’amour, or the Love Apple, for their belief that the exotic tomato had aphrodisiac powers. Tomatoes might not be responsible for romance in people, but eating tomatoes does seem to spark a lust for more tomatoes.
When I first heard someone say “Ataulfo,” I nearly said “Gesundheit!” The Ataulfo mango is sometimes referred to as the “champagne mango.” And it makes me think of that line from the Van Morrison song: “She’s as sweet as Tupelo honey,” except I sing it as: “She’s as sweet as Ataulfo honey-mango.” It generally annoys everyone in the vicinity of my voice. Nonetheless, this mango is sweet like a love song.
How has Thanksgiving evolved for you? Is it Norman Rockwell traditional, political, locavore, or perhaps a blend? Whatever your approach, the Wampanoag native people have touched all of our menus. The Wampanoag, or People of the First Light, are credited with welcoming the Mayflower Pilgrims.
Navel oranges (the “winter” orange) and Valencia oranges (the “summer” orange) are similar in flavor and appearance, but what distinguishes one from the other? Oranges are one of the most commonly grown fruits in the world, and both Valencias and navels are categorized as sweet oranges of the genus Citrus x sinensis. From the outside, the characteristic that can help you tell them apart most easily is the feature that gives navel oranges their name: the navel! (Valencias don’t have one.)
At the Still Life Modeling Agency, the pomegranate gets callbacks all the time. You can see why—it’s such an intriguing fruit. Its beautiful maroon color, its little calyx crown, and its burgundy skin, which looks like a worn leather suitcase packed full of mysteries, perhaps even love letters. When opened, it reveals a hive of jewels—ruby and garnet arils filled with crimson juice. It’s a beautiful fruit you can spend time positioning “just so” when staging your kitchen counter.
Hello, my name is Violet Beauregarde. You may remember me from Roald Dahl’s novel Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. I was the kid who chewed a lot of gum—and I mean A LOT—and while visiting Mr. Wonka’s factory, I got excited and grabbed one of his inventions. Short story shorter, the dang gum backfired, and I turned into a giant blueberry and had to be rolled away by the Oompa Loompas.
The avocado originated in south-central Mexico about 10,000 years ago. It was several millennia before wild avocado trees were cultivated and many more before the Hass avocado—the most common variety in the U.S. today—was born in a California backyard during the early 1930s.
Springtime mandarin season makes me think of the Full Moon Fairy. I first heard about her when my daughter came home from kindergarten and announced that a fairy would be visiting us—every full moon. Ah, another late-night visitor to add to the guest list. I was already pressed to remember to leave the gate unlatched for Mr. Claus, the Tooth Fairy, the Easter Bunny, assorted leprechauns, and now the Full Moon Fairy.
(Throat clearing) “Excuse me—we have a strict ‘no pets’ policy here.”
“I don’t have any pets.”
“What do you call that cute, fuzzy brown thing you’re petting?”