The Summer Harvest
If you are one of those lucky people with fruit trees in your back garden, or know a friend who is you will be familiar with the idea of fruit overload at this time of year.
Being in the Barossa there is an abundance of backyard grown fruit, from peaches to nectarines, plums, figs, mulberries, apricots and of course quinces.
We frequently receive fruit ‘care parcels’ at Carême. At the moment everyone’s fig trees are groaning with a bumper crop. Hence the focus on figs on our facebook feed!
After the initial excitement at the start of harvest we all start to groan ‘we can’t possibly eat any more figs’! Really we do!
Of course we need to get our preserving pinnys on and bed these babies down ready for the cold months. Now, unlike some well-respected Barossans I don’t own a Fowlers preserving kit let alone a stash of all those gorgeous preserving jars (well a few, but they’re reserved for tomato passata). And time is not always on my side, so what to do?!
If you have a reasonable amount of free space in your freezer simply freeze it. There are a couple of rules to follow to get the best results.
Freeze berry fruits on a tray first, spread out, once frozen transfer to a snap lock bag. If you go for the snap lock first you will end up with a big clump of frozen berries rather than individually frozen fruit.
If freezing stone fruit remove stone, cut into halves, quarters or smaller, depending on size of fruit, again lay on a tray, freeze then transfer to a snap lock bag. Same deal for figs.
So when you are bored of apples and pears in winter, turn to your frozen summer fruits to make frangipane tarts, crostatas, galettes or cakes. No need to defrost add them to your tart or cake frozen and bake.
Or, as was suggested to one Carême teamster, why not share the love and donate the fruit. Here in the Barossa we have the ‘Kind Hearted Kitchen’, a not for profit group run by two hardworking Mums who, along with a team of volunteers, make delicious and nutritious meals for those in need in our local community.