Backyard Bounty all-Tasmanian Vegie box: 18th May

This week we welcome the return of Scott Hansen’s delicious Nubeena pears – unlike apples which are great eaten straight off the tree, most pears benefit from some ageing in cool-store, which develops sweetness and complexity in the flavour without sacrificing crunch; this, amongst other reasons is why the commercial pear season starts later than the apples. It’s been a difficult year for fruit growers in Tassie – Kindred Feijoas may have to destroy their entire crop as the fumigation that’s legally required for them to sell their fruit out of the fruit-fly exclusion zone destroys their fruit, and the wild weather last week may mean a premature end to the strawberry season for David Jennings in Cygnet. Thankfully apples and pears are a bit less susceptible to stormy weather, and as much of the crop is already picked and in controlled storage conditions, supply of these delicious and healthy lunch-box fillers should be plentiful for most of the winter and into spring.

This week’s $30 and $40 boxes get a rare treat this week – the first pink fir apple potatoes of the season. These really are the prince of salad potatoes (no royal weddings here though…), with a rich flavour and meaty texture when gently boiled, although they roast up a treat as wedges too and make a mean gratin Dauphinoise. They’re a little knobbly, but there’s no need to peel them – just give ‘em a scrub and get cooking. Grown for Taste have also provided a little treat for a few of our customers – a small number of delicious green cauliflower. We didn’t have enough of these to go round – a few have headed off to the Glass House restaurant and the others will be enjoyed by some of our pick-up customers this week. Nicky from Maydena delivered a half tonne of QLD blue and Jarrahdale pumpkins on Wednesday this week – we’re sending out the QLD blues to $30 and $25 boxes this week – and we’ve also been able to get hold of some very pretty purple and white turnips from York Town Organics.