may 8, 2023
fruit forward fan club meeting notes
Rain? In May?!? In California?!?!?
We’re so grateful for all the rain we’ve gotten this year, and–for the most part–our farmer friends are, too. But this has also been an agonizingly long wait for spring to finally blossom. In years past, we’d be two months into sweet Watsonville straws, and almost a month into cherries so sweet and plump they could only have ripened in the Central Valley heat.
But, as we’ve said: fruit is fickle, so we’ve waited patiently for a few early season jewels to be ready to shine. And here we are. It’s fruit party time.
If you’re anything like us, you’ve already eaten all of your fruit, so these notes are to inform you of what you’ve just devoured.
Snowchaser Blueberries from Coastal Moon Farm in Watsonville, CA
Most people are used to seeing California blueberries start up in June in the Central Valley, but we’re lucky enough to get some of the first fruit off the bushes from Coastal Moon Farm, who grow an early-season variety called the Snowchaser. They’re huge berries, sometimes as big as a quarter, and oh-so-delicious. Oftentime big berries mean watery, or mealy, or no flavor. But these berries are perfectly on-point every year, packed with incredible flavor and nutrients. We affectionately call these “MoonBerries,” but farmer Darren has repeatedly insisted that that’s not what they’re called. His loss. We’ll keep throwing brilliant marketing ideas his way.
Early Glenn Cherries from Murray Family Farms in Bakersfield, CA
Of the 700 types of fruit and 6,000(!) varieties Murray Family Farms grows, cherries is one that they’re known for far and wide. The Early Glenn, like many early-season varieties, leans toward the sweet tart side, rather than just sweet, but is already brixing at ~22°. It’s firm, with a nice crunch. You won’t find any cherries out there that even come close to this right now. It’s stone fruit season, bbs.
Surprise! from Good Land Organics in Goleta, CA
An amazingly fun grab bag – you may get one or more, and what you don’t get this time, you may get in a future box. How fun! A mix of passionfruit, ice cream beans, and loquats.
Ice cream beans are amazing and fun. Eat the fluffy pith surrounding the hard black pit, and you’ll taste a vanilla sweetness reminiscent of ice cream. Passionfruit packs a powerful tart punch, but when added to yogurt or frostings, the sweetness is carried a long ways. Cut the fruit in half, and scoop out the orange insides with a spoon. The small black seeds are edible, though hard enough that you may want to strain them out depending upon application. Loquats may look familiar to those in the Bay Area – they grow on backyard trees everywhere! They’ve got a mango-orange-pineapple flavor to them, with a juicy flesh, surrounding large, hard, black (inedible) seeds. We love a good loquat.