Market Report - UK seasonal update 4 January 2016

The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 4th January 2016

IN ASSOCIATION WITH

This week's market report from Wild Harvest features yellow and grey legged chanterelle and trompette mushrooms, clementines, buddhas hands, red meat aka watermelon raddish and crosnes aka Japanese artichokes as well as a whole host of other fruit and vegetables currently in season which you can see below: Wild MushroomsWild Mushrooms & Truffles The next fungal firework will be the arrival of the first fresh morels from Turkey. This spring treat traditionally arrives in March. If mild conditions continue I would have a fiver on February this year. Until then we rely on Portugal and the US for wild mushrooms.   This week’s offering being:-
  •  Yellow & grey legged chanterelle
  • Trompette
  • Pied de mouton
  • Girolles
Winter truffles are hailing from Italy and the Perigord region of France. The French sourced black truffle currently deserves it’s slightly higher price tag. clementinesFruits Only time will reveal the impact of our mild December on fruit’s seasonal behavior. I’ve had reports of apple trees in England, and cherry trees in France being in bloom this week. Hold on guys before you do your reproductive thing, and become vulnerable to disease. Spain is now producing blood oranges. We will be buying a case every week and eating them in house (for the sake of thorough QC and common cold prevention) until they hold more “blood” than an under-achieving mosquito. Pears and apples are still in good shape (in particular the lovely late passe crassane pear), but our fruity focus is very much on our thicker skinned offering now. Here’s a list of just some of the citrus flowing through our fridges:-
  • Clementines
  • Unwaxed leafy lemons
  • Buddhas hands
  • Finger limes
  • Keffir limes
  • Kumquats
  • Honey pomelo
  • Not to mention everyday lemons, limes, grapefruits, satsumas and oranges
rhubarbVegetables I’m getting excited about the imminent forced rhubarb season in the Yorkshire Triangle. Let’s hope that the lack of frosts (an important part of its lifecycle) does not affect quality or availability. For those who have been sent my updates for more than one season, I’m sorry to subject you to some rehashed rhubarb favourite facts. The Yorkshire triangle is a 9 square mile area between the Yorkshire towns of Wakefield, Morley & Rothwell and has been protected by an EC PDO (protected designation of origin like Parma ham & since 2010. Rather like one of England’s other luxury crops green asparagus, forced rhubarb is a long term investment. Plants need to spend 2 years in the fields to store carbs in their root systems. In November they are transferred to dark heated sheds. The carbohydrates are then released into the body of the plant and converted into glucose. The root is then exhausted and is only fit for compost. This system results in a sweeter more tender stem than the field grown summer crop. If we look back to the early 1800’s and the origins of the forced rhubarb technique, fertilization was provided by horse manure and “night soil”. If you haven’t come across night soil before make sure you have eaten before you look it up. The season lasts until Easter to virtually shake hands with the field grown UK crop. The scars of the Christmas rush are healing nicely, and it’s time to keep pace with the ever inventive people from Koppert. We have long supplied baby nasturtium shoots in the cut form, to provide an elegant spicy note to relevant plates. ZorriThis week we add Koppert’s Zorri cress to our micro offering, which is nasturtium in it’s growing form to optimise shelf life & freshness. As above with citrus, rather than list every vegetable that’s made it into January I’ve cherry picked some favourite roots for your reference:-
  • Red meat aka watermelon radish
  • Crosnes aka Japanese artichokes
  • Helianthes the milder cousin of Jerusalem chokes
  • Candy and golden beet in adult and baby form
  • Chervil and parsley roots
  • Purple and yellow carrots in adult & baby form
  • Sand carrots
  • Salsify
As usual, this is just a small selection of what we have on offer. Call in on 020 7498 5397 to speak to the team about what other treats we have in store for you today. Visit the website here.

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The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 4th January 2016

Market Report - UK seasonal update 4 January 2016

IN ASSOCIATION WITH