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Fresh This Week Tips, Week 10.17.10

Spitzenburg Apples
STORE: To store, keep apples as cold as possible in the refrigerator.
PREP: Gently rub the apple as you run warm water over it to clean. Peel and cut your apple into slices or cubes. To prevent apples from browning, brush with a lemon juice-water solution (1 cup water mixed with 1 teaspoon lemon juice).
USE: This dessert apple is great for cider, apple pies or eating out of hand. It is also rumored to have been a favorite of President Thomas Jefferson!

Bartlett Pears
STORE: Keep pears in a cool, dark place until ripe. To test for ripeness, gently push on the stem. If it gives a little, your pear is ready to eat. Once ripe, pears may be stored in the refrigerator.
PREP: Wash pears in cold water and keep them whole, slice them or chop them.
USE: Bartlett pears are delicious eaten out of hand, but are also great choices for canning or baking.

STORE: Separate your greens from the beets and keep them in separate plastic bags in the refrigerator. Leave an inch of the greens to prevent flavor loss and bleeding. The beets should last for about a week, but use your greens as soon as possible.
PREP: Scrub your beets and rinse the greens before using.
USE: Beets can be roasted, baked, steamed or eaten raw. The Klesick family loves to boil the beets, quarter them and eat them while they’re still warm with a bit of butter straight out of the pot! Be sure to sauté, steam or braise the tasty greens with a little olive oil and salt.

STORE: Store cauliflower for up to one week in your crisper covered by a plastic or paper bag.
PREP: Keep whole and chop off ¼ inch off the stem or cut the head into bite-sized florets.
USE: Steam, roast, bake or stir fry cauliflower. Be careful not to overcook!  For a simple, delicious pizza, try this “pizza” with cauliflower crust recommended by a customer (great for those eating gluten free).

STORE: Store fresh fennel in the refrigerator crisper. It should keep fresh for about four days, but try to use it as soon as possible for the best flavor.
PREP: Wash your fennel thoroughly to remove all dirt. Don’t be afraid to use all parts of the fennel in cooking: the base, stalks and leaves. The ideal way to slice your fennel is to cut it vertically through the bulb.
USE: Fennel is the unique, crunchy, licorice-tasting vegetable used commonly in Mediterranean cooking. When paired with juicy oranges, the fresh flavor and crisp texture of the fennel really shines. Try this festive Fennel and Orange Salad from kiss my spatula. You can also use fennel leaves as an herbaceous seasoning to entrees or soups.