What a treat it is to have this delicious kiwifruit harvest now available at our markets.
Available from both the Kendrick Family of Catlin Ranch in Carpinteria (certified organic) and Bob Criswell of Mallard Lake Ranch located in Nipomo, this tangy, full flavored fruit is one of the healthiest additions you can incorporate into your winter diet.
Kiwifruit possesses the highest level of vitamin C of any fruit, almost twice that of an orange, is packed with more potassium than a banana, and is a good, low fat source of vitamin E. They are also great sources of folate, lutein, Fiber, calcium, iron, magnesium and copper. They’re a favorite with the kids.
You can pick up a bag at the Saturday and Tuesday Santa Barbara farmers’ markets. Price averages about $4 per pound.
There are two varieties of persimmons available at the farmers market, both with very different textures and functions. The more common commercial variety is the hachia, which belongs in the astringent category, and should always be eaten when soft.
When unripe, they possess an extremely unpleasant bitter flavor. As they begin to turn ripe and soften, the fruits tannins become inert and the astringency disappears, yielding a sweet, soft and delicious persimmon.
This variety can be scooped out and eaten with a spoon, added to your favorite hot cereal for a natural sugar additive, or is perfect for making persimmon cookies, cakes, and breads.
They can be left on the countertop until ripe and then refrigerated for a few days after.
They are currently available at the weekly Saturday Santa Barbara, Sunday Camino Real Marketplace, Tuesday Santa Barbara, Wednesday Solvang and Thursday Carpinteria farmers’ markets. Price averages about $2 per pound.
Sunshine kabocha squash
This has consistently been my favorite winter squash variety year in and year out.
Kabocha squash is one of the most full-flavored varieties out there, delivering a sweet and nutty flavor with a smooth stringless texture when cooked. It also has a very high ratio of edible flesh, which is instantly noticed when lifted due to its density.
Finally, when cooked, the skin is so thin that it almost possesses the same texture as the flesh, making it deliciously edible. Due to its deep orange pigmented flesh, kabocha squash is loaded with the essential antioxidant beta-carotene, enough to supply almost 150% of the daily value for Vitamin A. You get all that from 1 cup of cooked squash.
It is also a very good source of dietary fiber, and supplies Vitamin C, magnesium, manganese and a good amount of potassium. It’s grown organically by several local producers.
You can find this winter favorite at the weekly Saturday Santa Barbara, Sunday Camino Real Marketplace, Tuesday Santa Barbara, Wednesday Solvang and Thursday Carpinteria farmers’ markets. Price averages $1.50 per pound.