One of the most frequently asked questions that comes my way from customers as we cross paths at the weekly farmers markets is, “What’s good today?”
I usually smile as I think to myself: “Well, everything.”
This past week my answer, however, was generally stated as “stone fruit and berries.” Then, more specifically, “Brooks cherries, yellow nectarines, blackberries, and mulberries,” all among my top picks for this week. If looking for good finds other than fruit, I pointed them towards the array of fresh summer squash, thai basil, Chinese long beans, and the season’s first slicing cucumbers.
The convergence from spring into the summer season is truly culinary greatness in the local fields.
Once I’m home from a day of work at the farmers markets, my 3- and 6-year-old boys always come running out to see what’s in my bags. Assisting me with the transferring of fresh goods from the car to the kitchen, they peek in to see what they can maybe graze off the top.
This week, they both stopped, put their bags in and dove straight into the 3-pack of berries they were each holding. Going straight for the mulberries, something they had not seen since last summer, before I knew it, two baskets were gone.
Unlike most other berries, mulberries are very sweet and absent of the tartness that is found in their counterparts.
Enjoying the elongated stem, you’ll find the central stem is consumed with the fruit, while the tiny stem portion used to grip the berry is often discarded, although that’s something I usually just eat.
With so much incredible fruit available at my fingertips, this week I prepared a stone fruit and berry fruit salad, finished with refreshing chopped mint leaves. Enjoy any time of the day. This is one the entire family will enjoy.
STONE FRUIT AND BERRY FRUIT SALAD WITH FRESH MINT
2 pounds mixed stone fruit such as peaches, nectarines, apricots and cherries (pits discarded, cut into half-inch pieces)
2 cups mixed berries, such as mulberries, blueberries, blackberries and strawberries. All berries left whole, except for strawberries , which should be sliced
1/4 cup finely chopped mint leaves
Optional: Add cubes of mozzarella or feta cheese, and/or pieces of prosciutto to turn the salad into more of a meal.You also can add a drizzle of good quality aged balsamic vinegar.
To assemble fruit salad, add all fruit to bowl, sprinkle top with mint and gently toss until well incorporated. Yield: Serves about 6.