After what has been one of the most difficult winters I can ever remember, I am hoping that April will bring some respite from the the poor quality and high prices we have seen recently in the markets. The good news is that prices have begun to come down. Cucumbers and salads have dropped in price as the English season has began. All types of tomatoes have also seen a reduction in price from their recent peaks. Courgettes are a reasonable buy at present, why not try courgettes flowers which are also available at the moment. Fresh peas and broad beans from Italy and Morocco are a great buy at this time of year. Capsicum prices remain high at the time of writing but should ease in price as we approach the end of the month.
Look no further than wild garlic (ramsons), if you are looking for something bang in season. They come in 500g packets and are great cooked or used raw in salads. Purple sprouting broccoli and spring green cabbage are also good quality at present. The first of the locally grown English asparagus has started to appear and though expensive at the expect prices to drop sharply. New season jersey mids and ware are also around but are always a bit pricey, Cornish mids cannot be far behind. For those of you more daring, nettles are available although you could always pick them yourselves !
English rhubarb is available in abundance and at quite a good price, we also have morel mushrooms in stock. Artichokes are coming up quite nice at the moment and our Italian fennel is the best I have seen for a long time.
Unfortunately our Italian blood oranges are all but finished now, we will see them again next year. Spanish strawberries are still coming up nice and are really cheap. Red blush pears are also now in stock but our English conference is still the best bet if you are after something ripe. Our yellow plums are also sweet and tasty along with Moroccan nectarines, peaches and the wonderfully flavoursome stripy melons.
Don’t forget the bank holidays at Easter this month and St Georges day 23 April.
How could we predict that a volcano erupting in Iceland would cause us more problems !!! Due to the flight ban we can expect some shortages in the produce that is flown in to the UK. French beans and mange tout will be the main problems but we will keep you informed as we learn more…