• WellingtonFresh

The Wellington Weekly

I have a confession to make. This will be very difficult for me to admit, so please bear with me. I have in the past had occasion to write about the Mangosteen, but until a few days ago had never actually tasted one. I know, it’s shocking, isn’t it? What’s most shocking of all, however, is that I’ve gone all this time having denied myself the pleasure of sampling one of the most flavoursome fruits I’ve ever encountered. Referred to in Thailand as the ‘’queen of fruits’’, the mangosteen is a tropical cultivar whose exocarp (rind) is of a deep reddish-purple when ripe and at the base of which is an arrangement of raised, petal-like ridges. Beneath the rind, the edible part of the mangosteen is made up of anything from 4-8 pearl-white, wedge-shaped segments (botanically defined as ‘arils’) which are formed in a circular fashion similar to tangerines. The fragrant edible flesh can be described as sweet and citrusy, with an overall flavour and texture similar to that of the peach. Truly wonderful.

Looking like a large, scruffy, mis-shaped orange, the Ugli Fruit is in fact a trademark name for a Jamaican Tangelo - a hybrid of grapefruit, orange and tangerine. Usually slightly larger than a grapefruit, its taste tends more towards the sweetness of the tangerine. The ones currently appearing in the market (of which the picture below is an example) all appear to be green-skinned, but don’t be put-off by this because the skin colour doesn’t, as a rule, reflect how sweet the fruit itself will be. One portion of Ugli fruit will provide you with 70% of your recommended daily intake of vitamin C and is said to be particularly effective in combating cardiovascular and gastrointestinal ailments

Yellow Plums have arrived in the market. South African Sun Kiss plums to be more precise. They have a fine, firm texture and possess a flavour that is sweet with mild, citrusy undertones. As always, I urge you to bear in mind the fact that these are early examples, therefore they may not yet have had the chance to fully develop and that furthermore their price is likely not to be exactly cheap.

For those of you on the look-out for a Red Pear variety that makes a statement, you need look no further than the big Red Anjou pears which have recently arrived in the market from the USA. They’re texture is firm and crisp and the statement they make is that we’re big and red and from the good ol’ U-S-of-A.

It all began as a request from a customer who was looking for a specialist Chipping Potato. Sure, we said, we stock at least two or three varieties in our warehouse at any given time, namely Agria, Lovers and Chippies Classic. Yes, I see (was the customer’s response), but the problem is that they’re all dirty, and I don’t have the time to scrub vast amounts of spuds. What I’m looking for is a chipping potato that’s already washed. Oh! (was our amazed reaction to the very concept of a washed chipping potato). After having composed themselves, our buyers proved themselves to be up to the task and the upshot is that they did indeed manage to track down a variety that perfectly fitted the bill and which goes by the name of Cabaret. And the good news is that they are not merely for the exclusive use of the original customer in question, because everyone else (including you) can avail themselves of them also.

English Purple Sprouting Broccoli appears to have benefitted from the recent chill, because all the examples I encountered on my last visit to the market a couple of days ago were, without exception, truly outstanding. Deeply and evenly coloured, with firm, well defined florets crowning verdant, strong yet tender, succulent stalks, I have no hesitation in recommending it very highly.

We’re going to start offering Prepared Mixed Salad Leaves in 500g bags. They differ from our already established Baby Mixed Leaves inasmuch as they’ll comprise ‘’regular’’ sized leaves, so to speak. At the time of writing I only have a vague knowledge of what will be included, because the info I have only describes the mix thusly: Lollorosso (30%), Apollo (30%), Endive (30%) and Red Chard (10%). Be assured, though, that I’ll give more detailed info next week.