We now have Owari Satsuma mandarins for sale at the fruit stand. They're sweet, juicy, usually seedless and easy to peel. Mandarins were very late maturing this year and because of so much rain it's been hard to find a time when they're dry enough to pick. We still have lots of persimmons too, including Hachiya, vodka-treated Hyakume and Fuyu. The Fuyu persimmons are not crisp and hard anymore though, because it's so late in the season for them. Although mail orders for hoshigaki are now being added to a waiting list, we still have small amounts of hoshigaki for sale at the fruit stand.
This week's Sacramento News and Review newspaper has an aricle called "Saveurs of the (almost) Lost Ark" about hoshigaki (dried persimmons) and the Slow Food Ark of Taste. It features Otow Orchard and Penryn Orchard Specialties and talks about how farmers in our area have been trying to preserve the art of making hoshigaki. Hoshigaki is part of the Slow Food Ark of Taste because it's considered a valuable and unique food in danger of not being produced anymore because of modern market pressures.
On Saturday, Dec. 25th, the fruit stand will be closed for Christmas Day.