Here’s my column for the Sydney Morning Herald’s Good Food section, with some additions. Happy shopping and chopping!
In now: Golden glowing persimmons come in two versions: sweet and original. Original persimmons are eaten when the flesh is soft, sweet and jelly-like. Sweet persimmons can be eaten crisp and crunchy like an apple, or soft and melting like an original persimmon. Persimmons build flavour when there is a big difference between daytime and night time temperatures. So while fruit has been available for a while, the really good flavours start now as the nights cool.
At their best: Chestnuts and walnuts are falling in the orchards of Mount Wilson. Check pick-your-own details at www.mtwilson.com.au. If you’d rather not collect your own chestnuts, buy firm nuts that feel heavy for their size. Store them in a paper bag in the crisper.
Best buy: Broccolini can be found at year’s-best prices. Find easy ways with broccolini here.
In the vegie patch: Plant podding, snap or sugar peas. Sow seed or plant seedlings, but first add organic matter and a handful of lime to the soil, and set up climbing supports. To boost germination rates water the soil well before sowing, and don’t water again until the first leaves appear.
- if you can find a Spanish sapo melon buy it. There aren’t many around, but this is the queen of the melons
- hold off quinces for a few weeks when they will be riper
- the wet weather is bringing up the pine mushrooms
- green olives are available for brining