Bumper crops of locally grown fresh produce are arriving by the truckload at the Brisbane Produce Market this week.

All apple varieties are excellent eating now, but the Pink Lady variety are the pick of the bunch. New season pears including Packham, Josephine and Corella are well and truly in season. For a modern morning tea, why not try making a ginger and pear cake.  This cake is best served when still slightly warm and lightly dusted with some icing sugar.

In citrus, there are plentiful supplies of both lemon and limes from Mareeba. There are good quality Imperial mandarins from Mundubbera and sweet Navel oranges from Murray Valley. Just starting to appear and fresh from the Gold Coast is the sweet and sour starfruit.

Figs are nearing the end of the season and there is a moderate supply of blueberries, custard apples, longans and lady finger bananas. While strawberries and blackberries are available, supplies are expected to increase with the Queensland season beginning in the coming weeks. Other great buys this week include Red Crimson seedless grapes, pineapple, watermelon and plums. Shorter supplies are expected in passionfruit, pawpaw and rockmelon.

There is a long list of great buying vegetables this week including beans, zucchini, eggplant, cucumber, cabbage, capsicum, cauliflower, brussel sprouts and chillies. There are increasing supplies of kale, leeks, silverbeet, lettuce, spinach, rocket, potatoes and pumpkins. However, corn, snow peas and mushroom supplies are all a little tight.

Broccoli from Tasmania and cherry tomatoes from Bundaberg are excellent eating quality. Select broccoli with a vibrant green head, firm and strong stem and compact clusters of florets. Broccoli is a versatile veggie perfect in a broccoli salad. By adding cooked crispy bacon, sweet dried cranberries and the saltiness of goat cheese, this unassuming vegetable will be a taste sensation your family will love.

In root vegetables, there are good supplies of carrots, parsnips, sweet potatoes and beetroot. For an earthy, warming side dish, roast carrots and parsnips with olive oil and melt butter, honey and vinegar in a saucepan. Once done, drizzle honey glaze, salt and pepper over the roasted veggies and serve.

This week’s top pick is the persimmon. This lesser known fruit is in season from March to May and grows on a variety of trees. Persimmons vary in shape, size and in colour from light to dark red orange depending upon their ripeness. They have tough edible skin like apples and can be crispy or soft. They are loaded with nutrients and fibre that can help reduce inflammation. Select persimmons that are firm, free from bruises and have green, semi-pliable caps. Persimmons can be added to salads, muffins, rice paper rolls, cookies or cheese platters.

About Brisbane Markets Limited:

Brisbane Markets Limited (BML) is the owner of the Brisbane Markets® site and is responsible for its ongoing management and development. BML provides infrastructure and services to facilitate the marketing of fresh food, flowers and other ancillary products for fruit, vegetable and flower wholesalers, retailers, provedores, secondary wholesalers, food processors, transporters, exporters, industry organisations and market support businesses.

More information can be found on our website: www.brisbanemarkets.com.au.

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