Archive for January 3rd, 2005

Supermarket [lack of] knowledge

Do you sometimes go into your local supermarket to shop and, at the green-grocery counters see a lot of ethnic fruit and vegetables that you wish you could try, but are not only unsure what they are, but also of how to cook it, if indeed you do cook it.

If you click on the link below, you will come to an American food company site. Along the top row of links is one called “knowledge” which is very informative, and one called “Glossary”. This page is awesome! There are the 26 letters of the alphabet along the top, and if you click on most them you will get screen pages of fruit and vegetable names. Click on one of these and all will be revealed.

The site is a little slow owing to its size but it is worth persevering if you want to increase the types of food you eat. “Yes, Michael F, I know you aren’t very adventurous and only eat “English” food” but, as the years go by, these will become “English” food!” 🙂

Today I have learned that Sharon Fruit is from the tomato family, but what is more, I have learned how to tell when it is ripe, and how to prepare it for eating. And what to eat it with.

Here is what the site says about it…

Sharon Fruit

A seedless variety of the Fuyu persimmon that was first grown in Israel and now is being raised throughout the world. Persimmons are very similar to a tomato, requiring that they ripen to become less firm, more pulpy and soft. Further, the persimmon can taste very sour especially when not ripe, and the skin is inedable.

The Sharon fruit, unlike the Hachiya persimmon, can be eaten while firm, the outer skin does not need to be peeled and discarded, there are no seeds in the crisp flesh, and it is less astringent or sour tasting than the Hachiya. This fruit can be added to salads, much like tomatoes, or used to complement other vegetable dishes. Sharon fruit can be found at certain times of the year in some markets, depending upon growing seasons and availability to food distributors in world markets.

When selecting, look for smooth, brightly colored, shiny skins and select those that are plump and firm, not too soft or mushy. The Sharon should be quite firm to the touch. Unripe fruit can be stored at room temperature to further ripen. Ripe fruit can be stored in the refrigerator for up to three days. Also referred to as kaki fruit.

I had never eaten this before as I never knew what it was, what it would taste like and how to tell when it was ready for eating. But I know now!

So next time you go shopping, don’t buy any of the items you are not sure of at this stage. Make a note of their names and then look them up on the site when you get back. Next time you visit your favourite supermarket you can then buy some of these items.

If you like cooking, and eating, as much as I do, I am sure you will find all this very exciting. Another new years resolution is to try one new item each week until I have tried them all!


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