Fruit and Veg

February's Fruit and Veg Market Report

Written by Tom Moggach
February 09, 2015

"You won't have seen this one before," says one grocer, walking past. In his hand is a snake fruit – pictured below – with its remarkable scaly skin:

Fruit And Vegetable Market Report February 2015 Snake Fruit

This fruit (more info here) is for sale at Gilgrove, along with their vast range of intriguing exotics – more on them later.

For less obscure highlights, look to blood oranges, Seville oranges (pictured below) and Yorkshire forced rhubarb, a wonderful ingredient that starred in our Product Profile last month:

Fruit And Vegetable Market Report February 2015 Oranges Wide
Fruit And Vegetable Market Report February 2015 Seville Oranges

Don't forget English apples and pears – still eating well. Modern technology means the season stretches longer (see our Grower Profile), and varieties such as Comice, Braeburn and russets remain a good bet:

Fruit And Vegetable Market Report February 2015 Braeburn Apples

On the veg front, excellent options include kales and cabbages of all kinds, including homegrown January King and pointed Hispi from Portugal:

Fruit And Vegetable Market Report February 2015 January King Cabbage
Fruit And Vegetable Market Report February 2015 Pointed Hispi

Extra brassicas of note include sprouts and their tops, flower sprouts (a cross with kale – more info here) and kohl rabi. Purple sprouting is more erratic.

Fruit And Vegetable Market Report February 2015 Flower Sprouts

Extra brassicas of note include sprouts and their tops, flower sprouts (a cross with kale – more info here) and kohl rabi. Purple sprouting is more erratic.

Fruit And Vegetable Market Report February 2015 Potatoes

Note that courgettes are very pricey and best avoided if possible. On the leafy side, spinach and radicchio are a decent option:

Fruit And Vegetable Market Report February 2015 Spinach

You will also find winter radish, breakfast radish and small and sweet Japanese-variety turnip at European Salad Company:

Fruit And Vegetable Market Report February 2015 Turnip

Squashes, fennel, artichokes and Swiss chard are available, plus specialties such as cardoons:

Fruit And Vegetable Market Report February 2015 Squashes
Fruit And Vegetable Market Report February 2015 Cardoon

You'll also find Jerusalem and Chinese artichokes, a.k.a. crosnes:

Fruit And Vegetable Market Report February 2015 Crosnes

Freezing temperatures across Europe does not help the selection of wild mushrooms, but you will still find an array.

Cultivated shiitake are proving increasingly popular due to their meaty texture:

Fruit And Vegetable Market Report February 2015 Shiitake

Back on the fruit side, there's an abundance of fine citrus, including leafy lemons, leafy clems and Cara Cara oranges (more info here), with their pinky red flesh:

Fruit And Vegetable Market Report February 2015 Cara Cara Orange

Lychees are still here:

Fruit And Vegetable Market Report February 2015 Lychees

Mangoes and papaya from Brazil are plentiful and well priced. Chilean and New Zealand cherries are plump and sweet, but not cheap.

Grapes are shipping mainly from South Africa, which is also sending plums, peaches and nectarines.

For softer fruit, Morocco is taking over from Spain as the main sender of raspberries, blackberries and strawberries.

On the exotic front, these quieter months are a good time to try something new. How about these Desert King pitaya, a.k.a. dragon fruit – sold by Gilgrove.

Fruit And Vegetable Market Report February 2015 Desert King Pitaya

Or tamarillo from Colombia?

Fruit And Vegetable Market Report February 2015 Tamarillo

Another new one for me were these green Marinda tomatoes from Italy:

Fruit And Vegetable Market Report February 2015 Marinda Tomato

See you in March for my next report. As ever, feel free to get in touch with any comments or queries.

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