In season

September 13

In now: Loquats are the first fruit of spring, most delicious when pale apricot rather than orange. They brown quickly after picking so eat fast or store in the fridge.

At its best: Peak Australian asparagus season is September to November. Fresh spears have tight buds and a satisfying snap.

Best buy: Choose small firm pods of okra and reduce the slime factor by stir-frying chunks at high heat before adding to sauce.

In the vegie patch: Loquat fruit is a favoured resort of fruit fly, so if you have a tree harvest all the fruit to reduce the summer risk to tomatoes.

What else:

  • had it with kale? In Kenya kale’s a staple vegie patch crop as the elephants won’t eat it. It’s nicknamed ‘sukuma wiki’, meaning ‘stretch the week’ cause it’s always available to make the week’s meals last.
  • Green mangoes herald summer – and meantime make delicious Thai salads.
  • Choose fresh firm podded peas and buy to eat, not store.
  • There are good buys in bunches of full-grown spinach.
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