Market Report Sponsored by Oakleaf European Newsletter # 34

The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 17th June 2011

IN ASSOCIATION WITH

Kindly supplied by Oakleaf European

An exciting new take on Live from Rungis

Fruit & Mushroom

In an attempt to try and get away from talking about stone fruit so much, we will start with citrus! Not thought about so much at this time of year but we have now moved away from Spain for lemons and are offering superb Eureka from Argentina which is more perfumed, has a higher juice content and better skin colour. We are still sourcing some French Niçois lemon with leaf, which is un-waxed and both un-waxed and traditional oranges from Spain. Soft fruit sees the long awaited arrival of the gooseberry, both red and green varieties, and very good blackberries and blackcurrants from France. Black figs are getting better although still a little thin on flavour and colour, but green are worse as the usual hole appears for a few weeks in the Spanish early crop and the Italian is not up to the mark yet either. Stone fruit sees the start of the French season for Peach and nectarine which promises to be great in a week or two. European grapes are underway with white Vittoria a couple of weeks into the season and the Black Magic starting just this week.

 Vegetables & Salads

The Ecoli situation has really made life complicated, with cucumbers and now tomatoes struggling to find buyers. It seems confidence has been hit and even Dutch and Belgian fruit has arrived here today as they try to palm off wasted tonnage. Meanwhile the French asparagus season, which started early this year, is now close to an end on both green and white. We can still find a bit of pink & white but shortly we will be back on the Peruvian product. Wild asparagus will also finish this week. Romanesco from Brittany is back since last week but only available in a small calibre. By contrast the summer cauliflower is large and snow white. Beans are the product to focus on at the moment. Peas in pod are still good, extra fine beans from Morocco are really good and great value, new season Borlotti are now in full flow and we are just starting to get some nice tender yellow beans from Loire Valley. Our sandy carrot farmers in Les Landes send us yesterday's the picture of him harvesting his new production which will be with us tomorrow.

 Featured Products

Jolly Red Pulp Melons - a long title and one that merits a large mention as they are by far the best eating melon of the moment (orange flesh). The first of the seriously large stone fruit - a yellow peach from Spain that weighs over 300grms each. Flavorella or Plumcot is a cross between an apricot and a plum. Plenty of flavour, if a little sharp, under a smooth skin. Griotte cherry is the small red sour variety that is traditionally used to make griottines. It is notoriously delicate too! We are really pleased to be able to offer Lavender growing in pots after all your requests! These are grey shallots from Anjou in the Loire Valley. A hot shallot used mostly with fresh oysters. We are now offering a new range (to us) of dried pasta from Italy. We have chosen it because of its unusually high egg content and have been very pleased with the response so far. We currently list five different shapes and these can be found with the other dried pasta in our catalogue.

Featured Product - Guinea Fowl

Guinea fowl meat is high in protein and low in cholesterol. It is a good source of vitamin B6, selenium and niacin and makes a great alternative to chicken. It has a lovely flavour that is slightly gamey but very subtle (much less assertive than pheasant or grouse). The guinea fowl is native to West Africa and then spread quickly across western and northern Europe and has been reared for the table in the UK since Elizabethan times.  They are hardy birds that forage for food and so are often farmed in free-range or semi-wild facilities where they also perform a valuable pest control function. They have an acute awareness of predators and so are valued for their role as a 'watchdog', alerting farmers to any henhouse intrusions. It is reported that they have the ability to distinguish between farmers' family members and strangers! To run alongside this article we have arranged some tasty offers see our meat lists later for more details

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The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 17th June 2011

Market Report Sponsored by Oakleaf European Newsletter # 34

IN ASSOCIATION WITH