British Food Fortnight is coming up from the 23rd September – 8th October and this month’s update includes just a little of the wonderful produce grown here in the UK.
Bobby Beans from Worcs. (left),Kentish Marrows, fresh Peas, Broad Beans & Runner Beans all from Kent. There are some stunning baby bunched veg from Essex (below), including Baby Fennel, Baby Beetroot, Baby Leeks and Baby Turnips.
Usually from elsewhere, but currently from Lincolnshire are Romanesco - like many brassicas, it is full of fibre, vitamin C and rich in antioxidants.
English Apples are now under way, with Early Windsor, closely followed by Cox, Russet and Royal Gala – all from Kent. Many other varieties including Braeburn should start in October (more info to follow nearer National Apple Day).
British Conference Pears should start in late October also.
Outdoor UK Rhubarb is still available from Cambridgeshire, along with Piccolo Parsnips and Globe Artichokes. From Lincolnshire - Hispee (Pointed) Cabbage, Broccoli, White Cabbage and Spring Greens. Carrots, Cauliflowers, Beansprouts, Leeks, Savoy Cabbage, Celery, Cavolonero, Pak Choi, Red Cabbage, & Kale, all from Lancashire. Spring Onions, Purple Sprouting Broccoli, Bunched Carrots coming from Worcestershire. Sweetcorn (in husk) should be around for a few weeks more (Essex & Kent). Sprouts and Sprout Tops (Lancs) are slightly earlier than expected, but supply may be a bit hit and miss for a few weeks.
Other UK grown items include Celeriac, New Potatoes, Jacket Potatoes, Red/Golden/Candy Beetroot, Rainbow Chard, Cobnuts, Spinach, Heritage Tomatoes, Baby Spinach, Onions, Chantenay Carrots, Bramley Apples, Swede, Parsnips, King Edwards, Desiree Potatoes, Maris Piper, & all Microherbs.
Strawberries will come to an end soon, but British Blackberries, Blueberries & Raspberries are all excellent quality right now.
UK Autumn Squash have also started (please see below for more information & varieties).
With Autumn just around the corner, there are some fabulous looking and tasty British Squashes available.
These are available in 10kg Mixed boxes or individually by the kilo. Varieties include Spaghetti, Turk’s Turban, Harlequin, Gem, Casperita, Crown Prince, Onion, Pattison Stripe, Acorn and Kermit. All of these are grown in Cambridgeshire.
During the Autumn months there are usually more and more wild mushroom varieties available – Yellow and Grey Chanterelles are initially expensive. Also available are Trompette and Cep/Porcini. Foreign Girolles are currently good value.
As we head towards cooler months, stonefruit including
Peaches & Nectarines
will be coming to an end over the next few weeks.
Spanish Pomegranates (above) are very good lately, bright skin and lots of bright red, tasty ‘arils’ inside.
Owing to lots of heavy rain in South Africa, Oranges have become short in supply and subsequently more expensive. Conference Pears will be from Belgium for another few weeks until the better tasting British ones start in October. Alternatively there are also Williams from Italy.
Plums are better value of late and currently from Spain. Nadorcotts (satsumas) are also from South Africa currently. There are some excellent quality Cherries from both USA & Canada around, but both can be quite pricey.
Black Figs are from Turkey, which have a bright flesh and excellent flavour.
As October approaches, expect most of the salad leaves to start to come from abroad, as the UK grown become less plentiful.