This time of year, I grow lustful for fresh fruit. We used to get pretty good fruit from Florida and California — sometimes even from Spain, Israel and other warm places. Especially citrus. In recent years, the quality fruit available in the supermarket during the winter has gotten pathetic and costly. Even local peaches were hard and sour. There was very little corn. The apples were good and I was grateful for that, at least.

I don’t mind paying for fruit that has to be trucked in from far away, but I mind paying a lot for inedible fruit.

Sumo Citrus

Last night, I was looking at a copy of the New Yorker. There was an ad on the back of the magazine for sumo oranges. These are a crossbreed — not GMO. They are a crossbreeding of oranges, pomelos, and nectarines. They are huge, easy to peel, seedless and what a beautiful golden color! I was practically drooling on the magazine. Sad, but true.

I realized I didn’t care what it cost. I need fresh fruit. I’d been surviving on jars of applesauce and small containers of cooked fruit. I hadn’t had a piece of fruit — fresh fruit — since last fall. So I did something I’ve never done before. I ordered oranges, nectarines, and grapefruit from Whole Foods. And you know what? They delivered it all exactly when they promised and I have a refrigerator full of citrus fruit.

I’m thrilled. Really. I opened one of the oranges after dinner and it was so big — and sweet — I shared it with Owen and Garry. The oranges are bigger than the grapefruit and the nectarines are organic and no more expensive than regular nectarines.

Nectarines (Clementine)

I’m almost drooling into my computer as I write this. I’d like to think that the dearth of fruit is because of the pandemic, but it isn’t. I’m not sure what the reason is. Part of it is that the local farms are closing down. The farmers got old, their kids didn’t want to farm and the land was worth a fortune. So they sold the farms — not to developers but simply to people who wanted beautiful land along the river. But the cows are gone and the fresh corn is disappearing.

Pink Grapefruit

The only fruit that is still growing locally are apples — we have a lot of orchards — and some small produce. Cucumbers, squash, tomatoes. Otherwise, everything grows somewhere else and whatever they deliver to us is not only not worth the price, it’s also not worth eating.

But ah, right now, my fridge is fully of golden fruit. I feel blessed by citrus!

Categories: Food, Fruit, Humor

Tags: , , , , ,

4 replies

  1. I can’t believe that you have no access to fresh fruit. Switzerland is a country with plenty of imports and we just spoke about the straws we get already now from Spain…. I couldn’t resist and bought a 500g basket. At lunch time I opened the punnet up and I had to throw away 3/4 of them. Not onloy are they fouling faster than you can carry them home, they are unripe when harvested and don’t stand gladly the transport in cooling containers – they taste of not much…. lesson learnt – eat fruit in the right season. But we have access to every fruit possible at a price, only I (normally) don’t buy them when not in season. Tomorrow I’ll make a fresh fruit salad with oranges, pink grapefruit, bananas, apple, pears and maybe some frozen berries which I have yet to buy. …. And it will be wonderful. Especially, as I like to add some grounded cinnamon and a ‘glutsch’ of Swiss Kirsch…

    Those pics are beautiful and I hope you can enjoy them fully. I’m less sure about storing them in the fridge. I don’t think that these belong there. Maybe you check them out. They should be fine in room temperature.


    • I don’t know why we don’t. This year, I can blame the pandemic, but it’s been like this for a while. We USED to get all kinds of imports, but we haven’t. Or, at least our local groceries don’t. I think the reality is I have to order them from a place which DOES get imports — NOT our local shops.

      In the summer, there are lots and lots of fruit, most of it local or relatively local (from other states in New England, for example). In the winter there’s nothing but citrus and the quality has been pretty bad. That might be because of the long drought in California and the strange weather in Florida. I really don’t know. But when it arrives, it’s already old and desiccated. You are right. They pick it before its ripe then ship it a long distance by truck. It doesn’t ripen properly. It needs to stay on the tree until it’s full grown and they pick it so early, I’m not sure it CAN ripen.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. We eat mainly vegetables and fruits, and are blessed with being able to obtain both. BUT the prices are high. We We have a lemon tree and a peach tree in our garden, and both bear well. Our blueberry bushes do not do not thrive, unfortunately. We have to buy organic ones. You must feel incredibly wealthy with a refrigerator full of delicious fruit.

    Liked by 1 person

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