As January storms loom large and the purse strings tighten, what better activity can there be for these gloomy days than a spot of marmalade making? Chosen for their high pectin-content and thick rind, the Seville orange is the citrus of choice for most marmalade makers. Customer recommendations this year have suggested whiskey as an excellent flavour enhancer, as well as the addition of a Bergamote lemon. These lemons – known for their starring role in Earl Grey tea – are amazingly perfumed and very juicy. Try in place of your regular lemon for an intoxicating and unusual flavour.
The UK brassica range remains terrifically strong for this time of year and flower sprout tops from the Wasses in North Yorkshire are looking particularly eye-catching. A kale and sprout hybrid, flower sprouts will be arriving in store in the next week or so. In the meantime the heads from the stalk of the plant are proving versatile and good value. A dense, purple leaf with lots of flavour, we’ve been adding them to stir-fries, grain salads and stews for a much needed dose of dark green.
Across the rest of the range we’ve plenty of colour and variety to brighten post-holiday blues. The blood orange season is well under way, with both the Tarocco and Moro varieties boasting sweet flavour and a healthy blush; we’ve the first arrival of South African white grapes and the last week or so on UK conference pears. And for those in need of a sugary pick-me-up, look no further than the caramel-rich branched dates from Tunisia – they are sublime.
A very happy new year to all of our customers!