Here’s a preview of some of the fruit we’ll have over the next couple of months.
The earliest apple variety that grows well in the UK, Discovery is refreshingly sharp with a good level of sweetness and a crisp pink and green skin. The warm, sunny spring this year has caused a few problems for our apple grower, Paul Ward in Kent. The weather made the trees blossom and fruit up earlier than usual and a late frost took out many of the fruitlets. However this also means the crop will be with us around two weeks sooner than usual, in early August.
A sweet, orange-fleshed nectarine that springs with juice at the first bite is one of the sticky-fingered delights of summer. If you’ve been put off by floury out-of-season imitators, have your faith restored with our naturally flavourful fruit. They are ideal for picnics, packed lunches and puddings, but try them in a salad with ricotta (try the buffalo version from our website) and prosciutto and you’ll never look back. Ours are grown under the Spanish sun and reach you by road and sea – far more ecologically sound than transporting by air freight.
Another peach-like darling of the summer, apricots can lift dishes with their delicate flavour and perfume. A pocket-sized snack they may be, but miss out on their pudding potential and you are selling yourself short. The classic is to poach them in a sugar syrup with lemon and wine for serving with dreamy ice cream, but they also pair beautifully with pistachios. Our chef Jane Baxter’s favourite is to use them in place of pears in her pear and almond tart – see our website for the recipe.