Produce News for Week of July 5, 2010
FRENCH SHALLOTS (Monday, July 5): Hey, the 97th annual Tour de France began over the weekend…lasts till July 25th. So I thought I would bring something in totally French. No, not the bikini, although that started on this day too in Paris, but oo la la! Look down here, something you have probably have walked by a hundred times in the onion section of your produce department. So what is that little brown thing? This is called a shallot or a French shallot. This is actually a French hybrid shallot. You know how I could tell? Because it’s quite large. A true French shallot is much smaller than this, but a grower in San Jose,California, bred it with a regular onion. So you would have the great flavor of a shallot, but you have a little bit larger size so it’s a little bit easier to deal with when you’re trying to cut it. And what’s so hot about a shallot? Well, one of the things that’s hot about it is its flavor. Its not hot. It’s very mild - one of they best cooking onions on the face of the planet. If you’re doing any cooking with an onion, why don’t you try a shallot?
GRILLING CORN (Tuesday, July 6): Hey, time for a little corn on the cob on the grill. I love corn on the cob on the grill. My wife loves putting corn of course in the microwave, but I like it on the grill. By the way, when you are shucking the husk, you notice all of that beautiful silk. There is one silk for every kernel of corn. That’s right. So there’s about three hundred and sixty kernels of corn. So that means there’s about three hundred and sixty silks. Pull the husk off the Corn, take all of the silk off. Next in getting your Corn ready for the grill, simply put that ear of corn right in the middle of a large sheet of tin foil. Add a little pat of butter. Ok, a big pat of butter, and that pat of butter is going to go right in here. Now you also can chop up some parsley, Italian parsley, and sprinkle that on your Corn as well. So now we have butter and Parsley on the Corn. Now add a cube of ice in there. We’re just going to roll this up, very simply. That goes on the grill. Now that cube of ice turns to steam and it helps steam that corn. The butter melts all over it. You pull that off with your steaks. Oh, my goodness! So good. And the best part, it’s already buttered.
PLUOT (Wednesday, July 7): Hey, about a half century ago, you know, Lennon-McCartney. Lennon, seventeen; McCartney, fifteen; met in Liverpool. Those two got together. What did they form? The Beatles. Well, let’s talk about things that get together. You get a plum, any plum, take a plum and then take an apricot. Put those two together, what do you get. No not the Beatles. You have what is called a plumcot. It’s fifty percent plum/fifty percent apricot. Now you take that plumcot, you toss it one more time with another plum, and you come up with a pluot. You know, pluots have become one of they most important and one of the biggest stories in the plum fruit season, and the season has indeed began. They generally get a whole lot larger than these. If you were trying to get your kids or your husbands, trying to get them to eat more fruit, may I suggest…go over to the pluot section. Just look at some of the names like dynamite and dinosaur egg, and you will get your kids to eat them, and plus they taste so good.
ITALIAN SWEET RED ONION (Thursday, July 8): World Cup finals are going on in South Africa. So maybe you’re going to have a hot dog. Well, July happens to be National Hot Dog Month so let’s have a little hot dog. Need some red onions with that hot dog? May I suggest Italian sweet red onions? They are here. Let me show you something…a secret about Italian sweet red onions. Well, first of all this has been a very unusual year for Italian sweet red onions. So you’re going to find a lot…they’re going to look a lot uglier this year. The curing processing…had a lot of rain in California, rain elsewhere in the United States, so it affects the curing process. So they will look a little ugly on the out side. Do not worry. They’ll be just fine. Second thing I want; if you’re stoking over all those Italian sweet red onions, I want you thinking something. The flatter they are, the sweeter they are. Flat at the north pole. Flat at the south pole. When they’re flat on both ends, that’s going to be your sweetest Italian sweet red onion. This is what we’re chopping up for our hot dogs.
FOOD SAFETY (Friday, July 9): You know it’s officially barbeque season right? I know. I’ve been barbequing for over a month already. And there is a mui importante food safety tip. Now I brought the little Marks brothers in. Of course, this is my oldest Marks brother, little Landon, and here’s Lincoln. He’s the baby of the family so guess what we call him. Babe Lincoln he is. Anyway, the little Marks brothers, what is the most important food safety tip I can tell all these nice people out there? What’s the most important thing? Washing our hands. That’s right, washing your hands. All ten fingers. Those two thumbs and five... You’ve got to wash all of them, and we wash them for twenty seconds, right guys? Yeah. So that means we got to sing Happy Birthday twice, or you could, I guess, do the ABCs twice, right? Roughly that’s going to be about twenty seconds. So make sure you have all the kids, all your husbands, everybody needs to wash their hands before you enjoy that wonderful picnic, right?