This Week in Produce

Updated every Friday

Last Updated: February 6, 2015

February is here, and Punxsutawney Phil saw his shadow this week, so brace yourself for another 6 weeks of winter. The Wedge Produce department has some great new items in stock, along with some things returning that many of us have been missing!

We've got some exciting new arrivals in this past week, including, arguably the best, citrus of the season: the TDE tangerine. We know that you have been asking for months when they would finally arrive, and thank goodness they finally have! A triple cross between the Temple tangor, the Dancy mandarine, and the Encore mandarin, these dark orange, easy-to-peel tangerines are a burst of flavor. Mostly on the sweet side with a little punch of tart, the TDE are addictive.

Fresh squeezed organic blood orange juice is back! This is our favorite Valentine's Day tradition here in Wedge produce and it's a customer favorite as well. Made with organic blood and valencia juicing oranges, it's sweet and tangy with those berry flavor undertones you expect from a perfect blood orange. Perfect for V-Day mimosas or to have at your weekend brunch, don't miss out on this juice, it flies off the shelf!

Organic fresh turmeric root is back after a short absence. If you were feeling sad about it being gone, I recommend getting a little extra next time you're in the store and keeping it in the freezer. Then, if we have some gapping again with turmeric availability you will still have some back up reserves! Freezing turmeric does not affect the nutritional value or the texture. I keep it all year round this way so I still can enjoy it when fresh isn't available.

Black truffles are available for the weekend. A gourmet treat that are domestically wild harvested in Oregon, these little beauties add depth and richness to your favorite dishes. I love to grate truffles into eggs, pasta dishes, even mashed potatoes. Bland and oily foods (like eggs, oils, and butter) truly enhance the earthy flavor of the truffle.

High Mowing certified organic seeds are now here in the produce department! These are the high quality seeds that customers come back year after year for. It is never too early to start planning next season's garden, and I know of a few people who are already getting ready to plant their seedlings.

Our Weekly Grower Greeting comes from Viroqua, WI today, from one of our favorite growers, Harmony Valley. Here is what Andrea and Richard have to say:

The month of January has been quite busy for us.  In addition to our daily vegetable washing & packing, we've also been working on ordering seeds & supplies for the upcoming season, interviewing, and have started to meet with our produce buyers regarding plans for this year.  Seed ordering takes a considerable amount of time.  We started the process last November when we did a physical inventory of our seeds to see what we are going to carry over for use in 2015.  Then there's the process of sifting through the seed catalogs alongside notes from last year's crops in order to make decisions as to which varieties we want to grow this year.  We also spend time talking with our seed reps from several of our core seed distributors.  They often have valuable insights into seed varieties based on the trials they do at their own facilities.  Over the next week, we'll get our computer database set up so we are ready to receive the large amount of seeds that will start coming in the first week of February.  I just had a conversation with our UPS delivery driver yesterday to remind him that it's seed season….please don't leave the packages setting in a pile of snow or a puddle!

In just 3 short weeks we'll start preparing our first greenhouse for transplants!  We thoroughly clean and sterilize the greenhouse, equipment, flats, etc in preparation for a new year.  We'll plant our onions first and should see the first green sprouts by the end of February.  …..and thus starts another year of farming.

Lastly, we've got some great decorative items in stock for the weekend. Locally grown and harvested willow branch bunches are a perfect winter decoration that last and last with no maintenance needed. There are five difference varieties of willow bunches available, and they are great for mixing and matching outside or in.

We also have a huge new selection of house plants, all sizes and some new hanging baskets as well. Don't forget to check out the beautiful bouquets this weekend, including the ones made right here in the store.