Best Selection of Fruit in Queens, US ONLY!
Where are all the blueberries, I ask? The strawberries, though early, look lousy from California, and have only seen US blueberries at Costco, $6 for a med container--not very sweet, too large. Everywhere else, including Trader Joe's, lots of stuff from Mexico.
I don't understand the whole invasion Mexico produce. I used to live in Mexico, and when you live there, you're told not to eat the produce and fruits, from non hotel sources, and if you do buy them from grocery store, to use tablets with them or spray to disinfect. And of course, everyone knows about the water.
But, why is all that produce sold here, with no warning to disinfect it properly? Most people just rinse their veggies in some cold water, and lots of people eat the peels to things. All this mexican produce that is suddenly shown up in our stores could account for the huge increase in food borne illnesses---------------Even whole foods sells the Mexican stuff...........
but I digress...................
where are the US blueberries? May is nearly over, and the prices for small containers are insane! Natural is crazy expensive on Austin St, in Forest Hills------------------please help!!
Any great fruit markets in Queens with NON MEXICO produce and Fruits???
Janie, jen kalb sort of has it right. The produce grown for domestic consumption in Mexico never makes it to the US border. The US has really high standards for imported produce (you're right to be cynical - it's not to protect the consumer, but the US growers), and the stuff that is grown in Mexico for export to the US has to be free of a list of defects. (You can find the USDA standards here: http://www.ams.usda.gov/AMSv1.0/ams.f...). The USDA subjects imported produce to a battery of tests and I believe the bacteria you're concerned about removing would be picked up on inspection.
As for blueberries, you'll start seeing them in June and probably from New Jersey. While you do sometimes get domestic blueberries from Florida and North Carolina as early as late April and early May, low rainfall in those regions this year probably caused their crops to be smaller, meaning less blueberries made it to the northeast.
Most of the luxury fruits are likely produced specifically for export under strict controls by American food conglomerates - its not like this food is sold in the market in mexico or south america! Yeah I prefer local stuff too, but we have totally given up on seasonality. I mean, blueberries blackberries, peaches, grapes etc have a very brief local season - yet we expect them year round. the tropical and southern hemisphere sources make this possible.
There may be some blueberries coming in from South Carolina, say soon, but it will be another month before the New Jersey stuff comes in. Then, later in the season, you will see Michigan and Canadian berries.
There seems to be a glut of Mexican blackberries, and they're not too bad. The ones I got at Trader Joe's on Woodhaven Blvd. were better than the ones I found at the Stop & Shop on Grand Ave. We wash them just like any fruit, and our toddler gulps them by the pint with no ill health effects, and so far, at $3 for a 12 oz box, I've made blackberry muffins, blackberry clafoutis, blackberry martinis, and here's a photo of today's blackberry tart.
That said, we're about ready for some other fruit to be in season, and local would be nice.
re: David A. Goldfarb
oh my, what a gorgeous tart! Yum! For my little one, and for all that could be sprayed liked berries, I use a spray bottle with GSE (grapefruit seed extract) about 30 drops to 25 oz cold water, and for herbs and lettuces, I soak with GSE about 15 drops in my salad spinner. GSE is non toxic, cheap, and safe,and kills anything bad, viral or bacterial. Buying those vegetable washes from Whole Foods is insanely expensive.
Stop and shop on Union Tpke has raised their prices crazy again on produce, although they do always have a good sale on strawberries, but they just look like terrible--bad color, wrinkly, and green shoulders----------
really need a place that always has stuff, because it's just not practical to shop once a week at a farmers market at this time of year when you want to eat a lot of fresh fruit.
Janie, blueberry season in the US is later---you should see them in about a month. The ones from Michigan should be available then and are usually tasty. Honestly, I've been very disappointed with ALL the berries coming out of California lately.
And thanks for the tip on Mexican produce. I think I'll skip it :-(