Fresh Fruit

Fall Preview 2013 And A Note From The Orchard

What’s Next? (and a note from the orchard)

Heads up!

We’ll be opening up our order form for a last load of peaches very soon… should be within the next few days.

And over the next several months we’ll be bringing in some other things too! Here’s a peek at what we’re preparing:

Late Summer and Early Fall Fruits 2013

August:
We’ll be getting a final load of northern peaches and few varieties of summer apples from an orchard we’ve had good
experience with. (See the note from the orchard below.)

September:
Pears, plums, more early apples, and a truckload of wheat, dry goods, and organic animal feed.

October:
Concord grapes, dry goods, and an abundant variety of apples. If you remember, last year was not a good year for apples (Remember how the late spring frost of 2012 killed most of the apple blossoms?). This year is like the reverse swing of nature’s pendulum; apple trees everywhere are heavy with delicious fruit!

Here’s a look behind the scenes into one of our recent emails from the peach orchard we’ll be ordering from later this month.

…We anticipate great quality and volume of peaches through Labor Day so I do not see a problem getting your truck loaded up at the end of August. We will have both yellow and white peaches available at that time. All the fruit that will be shipped to you will come directly from our orchards. We’d need your final order on the 26th. We have been having great quality this year, and as long as we stay hurricane free we should be in good shape.

We do strive to harvest tree ripened fruit that has the maximum sugar content, and typically we try to harvest, pack, and ship to the customer within 48 hours to keep the quality high for end customer. We would have a fuzzy peach in a box that came straight from the field. I think that’s what you’re looking for.

-Maggie

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Postal Delivery & UPS Shipments:

Over the next few months we will be offering more products via postal delivery (several hundred more). If you don’t live in our local delivery range, or if you’d like to have Bulk Natural Foods shipped to your door, we think you’re really going to like this!

We won’t, however, be shipping fresh fruit this year or in 2014. (We haven’t quite figured out how to make that work yet.) Only dry goods items will be ship-able for a while. So, woo-hoo! We’ll keep you posted as we move forward on this.

We can currently ship out about a dozen of our more popular items through our store: things like raw almonds, rapadura, superfood, Celtic sea salt, and the Nutrimill grain mill. (If you’re not already milling your own flour, definitely look into this power kitchen tool. Freshly ground wheat flour or any combination of gluten-free flours take minutes to make yourself, they’re healthier and taste remarkably better than any pre-milled flour you could buy.)

Anyway, we’ll be in touch about the upcoming PEACH order. Watch your emails for more information.

Tim & Erin

From Our Mailbox

My order of peaches was super fantastic! LOVED EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM! -Karissa

The peaches were again outstanding. Delicious, sweet, juicy, and perfectly ripe! -Monica

LOVE the peaches. We have been enjoying our first ever order of peaches and blueberries and mango. Peaches by themselves, peach cobbler, peach mango salsa tomorrow. Thank you for the fresh fruit. -Rebecca

The peaches are beautiful and the carrots have more flavor than any I’ve ever tasted! Forty pounds of bananas is a LOT of bananas, but they’re delicious and I’m clearing out enough freezer space to hold them for smoothies and baking for weeks to come. Thank you! -Jennifer

Oh my goodness! The family started eating peaches before I even got back into the car! Sweet, juicy and perfect even though they were 2nds. Wish I had bought 2 boxes so I will have some left to can. Thanks so much for the opportunity to purchase such yummy, healthy food. -Connie

Peaches and a Surprise July 2013

Erin, The peaches we got last week are just AWESOME! OUR kids sure think so.

So we are bringing in another load next week. Want some?

Peaches & More July 2013

The Ottos LOVE Their Peaches

On the order form, you’ll also find these delicious seasonal fruits. Note that there is an early order deadline for the bananas.

  • organic and conventional blueberries
  • organic mangoes
  • organic and conventional bananas (order deadline July 3rd early morning)
  • FREESTONE IPM peaches (number 1s and number 2s)
  • organic cling peaches

Place your order here
The pick up date is: July 11th or 12th, depending on your location
Order deadline: July 8th, 8:00 a.m.

Something Special Tomorrow

One more thing.

Tomorrow, if all goes as planned, we will be adding something special to the order form.

Something that is best in July.

Something incredibly sweet.

Any guesses? Watch your emails tomorrow, and we’ll let you in on the surprise!

Surprise Hint

Cherry Surprise

Tim & Erin Otto

What to do with Golden Delicious Apples

Golden Delicious apples are one of the most all-purpose apples out there. You can use them for baking, eating fresh, making apple sauce, or even apple butter. They’re awesome tasting apples (especially when they’re fresh), and this article is about some of the things I like to do with them.

One of the things these apples are good for is apple pies. You can make a quick and simple pie using this recipe. Or you can make delicious apple dumplings and surprise your family with a great desert (that’s if you can somehow keep them from smelling all the homey smells coming from the kitchen!).

We like to make apple sauce with our apples – and Golden Delicious apples are some of the best for sauce. To do this, simply wash your apples and cut them into quarters (don’t worry about stems, seeds, peel, etc.). Put them in a pot large enough to hold the apples you’ve cut, and cover the bottom of the pot with about 1 1/2 inches of water (the exact amount doesn’t matter). Put the pot on the stove, with the lid on, on medium low. Cook until the apples are tender. When they are nice and soft, we use a Roma sauce maker to make the apples into sauce. I personally love this product, but I’ve noticed from reading the reviews on it that many people have trouble using it. Here are a few tips that help me to have an easy time using the sauce maker:

Making tomato sauce with the Roma sauce maker.

1) People say that the little spout that the sauce comes out of is a bit too short, and too close to the counter, to fit a bowl under it properly. In my kitchen, there’s a handy place where we have a higher counter attached to a counter with a regular height. When I use the sauce maker, I attach it to the edge of the higher counter, with the spout hanging over the lower counter. Then I put a bowl under the spout and start cranking. It works great. If you don’t have a place in your kitchen like that, try using a shallower bowl that fits better under the spout. Or put the sauce maker on a cookie sheet to catch any spills.

2) The sauce maker attaches to your counter with a suction cup. Some reviewers say that the suction cup doesn’t hold onto the counter very well. Well, I’ve really never had that problem, but when we make apple sauce, we get everyone helping in the kitchen. One of the kids usually holds the sauce maker still (and holds it to the counter), while another cranks it. It’s kind of like a “mom-and-kids” party in the kitchen!

 

 

Storing your apples: Apples can keep for several weeks, and even several months, if you put them in the refrigerator. If you plan on keeping them for a long time, wrap them in paper towels and put them in plastic grocery bags (about 12-15 apples in each bag). Keep them in the refrigerator. We have used this method, and it works well. However, you might want to keep the bags hidden somewhere in the back of the fridge – we’ve found that the apples somehow disappear by the end of a few weeks if we don’t hide them. That’s why I don’t tell you exactly how long they keep – we’ve never been able to keep them longer than two months before they’re gone! I can’t imagine where they disappear to… :-)

We recently received a comment from a customer who ordered Golden Delicious apples, and it was so fun to read that I thought I’d post it on this article:

I was never a golden delicious or red delicious lover before – I find them a little “soft”.  I understood there was a bad harvest this year and this was going to be my only opportunity for apples, so I decided to order some golden delicious from you.

I have to say the golden delicious apples I just picked up are the most delicious “delicious” apples I have ever tasted.  They are not soft at all, very crispy and delectable with a wonderful flavor.  We are going to use your suggestion for storage with paper towels and bags, but I don’t think we have to worry about long-term storage too much – they will be gone too quickly!

We also appreciate your effort to get us high-quality goods and standing behind your quality when things go awry – i.e. the peach order (seconds).  (We do have to say, though, that the peaches that weren’t bruised were equally, if not more, as delectable as these apples!)

Thank you for all your hard work in getting us these wonderful items.  I’m going to keep my eyes open for any further apples for the next order – I think we’re going to need them!

-Belinda Fenton

I just couldn’t end this article without mentioning the apple muffins my mom makes. They taste wonderful – perfect for a breakfast, lunch, or midday snack. Click here for the recipe.

Emma

Whole Wheat Apple Walnut Muffins

Some muffin recipes call for milk to make up most of the liquid. And that’s fine for those recipes. But this one is all about flavor since the apples themselves make up almost all of the liquid. If you use freshly ground soft white wheat flour, the muffins turn out light and soft, and baked in preheated stoneware pans, they’re heavenly.

Whole Wheat Apple Muffins

Soft White Wheat Flour With Cinnamon and Rapadura

Ingredients

3 or 4 fresh apples, or you can substitute 2-3 cups of applesauce
1/3 c. melted butter
1 egg
1 t. vanilla
1 1/2 c. soft white wheat flour (use freshly ground flour if possible)1/2 c.
Rapadura (whole organic cane sugar)
1 t. baking soda
2 t. cinnamon
pinch of salt
1 c. chopped walnuts

Apple Muffins in Stoneware Pans

Directions

  • In a blender (or you can do this by hand), blend together the bananas, melted butter, egg, and vanilla.
  • In a separate bowl, mix together the flour, rapadura, cinnamon, baking soda, salt and chopped walnuts.
  • Combine the wet ingredients with the dry ingredients and spoon into buttered muffin cups.
  • Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes.
  • Enjoy!

Variation: Apple Blueberry Muffins
Prepare as above except use 2 c. of applesauce instead of the bananas, and 1 c. blueberries instead of the nuts.

Over-ripe Mutsu Apples

Simple Peach Slushy

With all the peaches we’ve had lately, we’ve been making this refreshing slushy quite a bit. It’s so easy that I don’t think I can really give you a recipe, but I’ll tell you what we do. For our 8 cup capacity VitaMix, we put about 3 cups water in the blender container and then add frozen peaches while the motor is running until the container is full. Add a spoonful of honey or a pinch of stevia powder, and it’s done.

This slushy is equally good made with frozen strawberries instead of the peaches. Yum!

Orange Peach Sherbet Smoothie

Minus the sugary sweetness of the store bought frozen treat, this really does taste like orange & peach sherbet. I use a Vita Mix for mine, which is powerful enough to handle this super thick smoothie. If you’re using an ordinary blender, you will probably need to add another orange or two.

When I make this smoothie with organic oranges, I often add a half inch piece of the rind for extra flavor and vitamin C complex. Try peeling your oranges with a knife so you can leave on some of the nutritious white pith too. The carrot is added for color and beta carotene, but you can’t taste it.

2 oranges, peeled, seeds removed
1 cup frozen peaches
1 frozen banana, broken into chunks
1 small piece orange rind (optional)
1/2 carrot (optional)

Put the oranges in the blender first, then slowly add the frozen ingredients and orange rind while the blender is running. Use the Vita Mix tamper or add extra oranges as necessary. Serve with a spoon.

Double Dare Peaches

This recipe is from Laura Murray, who found it on allrecipes.com, one of my favorite recipe sites.  If anyone makes it and has a photo to share, send it to me, and I’ll post it up!

My husband loves this!

Take a bite and enjoy the sweet from the peaches,  feel the heat sneak up on you, then put out the fire with ice cream!

1/4 cup butter                      2 habanero peppers, seeded and halved

8 fresh peaches, peeled,       1/4 cup brown sugar

Pitted and sliced                   1 teasp. Ground cinnamon

1/2 gal. Vanilla ice cream      1/4 cup crushed peanut brittle

Melt the butter in a large skillet over med. Heat. Add the habenero peppers and cook 5-8 minutes, stirring frequently.  Remove and discard the peppers (or chop and add to whatever salsa you have)  Now stir the peaches into the flavored butter.  Increase the heat to med. High.  Cook and stir til peaches begin to sizzle in the butter, then stir in the brown sugar and cinnamon. Continue stirring until the peaches are tender and the sugar has turned into a golden brown  glaze.(3-5min. More)

Spoon peaches into individual bowls, scoop ice cream over them, and sprinkle with peanut brittle to serve.

Lazy Peach Pie (Peach Cobbler)

From Debra DeMoulin
This was given to me by a Mennonite friend of mine.  It is a family Favorite!

Melt 1 stick margarine in a 13×9 or 8×8 glass casserole

Mix:  1 c. sugar
1 c. self-rising flour
1 c. milk

Pour into casserole.  Add one qt. canned peaches with about 1/2 the juice.
Bake at 350 degrees for 30 – 40 minutes or until golden brown.

Serve hot as is or with a scoop of ice cream.  YUM YUM!!!!

Icy Strawberry Mango Smoothie

Ingredients

1 cup plain yogurt

1 quart strawberries, hulled

1 frozen banana, broken into chunks

2 mangoes or peaches, cut up and pitted

8 ice cubes

Directions

Pour the yogurt into a blender and add the strawberries, banana, and mangoes (or peaches).  Blend until smooth and then add the ice cubes, one at a time.  Serve right away.

Christine’s Apple Pie Filling

Canned apple pie filling:  the ultimate last-minute dessert for unexpected company or chilly winter evenings when you’d rather be sitting beside the woodstove than slaving on pies in the kitchen.  If you’d rather, you can freeze this pie filling in quart freezer bags. Enjoy.

4 – 6 quarts peeled and sliced firm apples, like Winesap, Rome, Ida Red or Jonathan (reserved)

4 1/2 cups sugar or rapadura

1 cup cornstarch or arrowroot powder

4 teaspoons cinnamon

2 teaspoons nutmeg

3 tablespoons lemon juice

10 cups water

In a large pot, cook all the ingredients, except the apples, until thick and bubbly, stirring often.  Remove from heat.

Add as many apples to the sugar sauce as you can, keeping the mixture plenty juicy.

Place the apples into prepared quart jars and process 25 minutes in a hot water bath.   Makes 4 – 6 quarts.