Saturday, September 12, 2009

This Week at the Reading Terminal Market

Limes and grapes were among the bargains this morning at Iovine Brothers Produce. The limes were eight fror a buck. Two-pound bags of loose grapes were selling for $1.99, vs. a pound price of $1.99 for slightly larger grapes still (mostly) attached sold in tray packs.

Vinnie Iovine touted the quality and price of the mangoes this season. I didn’t check today’s price, but a week ago the large Kent mangoes were selling for two for a buck.

The number of different varieties of apples is widening as we approach the autumnal equinox, at Iovine’s, Fair Food, L. Halteman, O.K. Lee and Kauffman’s Lancaster County produce. Winter squashes of all sorts are plentiful. In addition to buttercup, butternuts and acorns, I spied gooseneck pumpkins (they’ve got coloration like a watermelon) at Iovine’s. Another good deal at Iovine’s were 10-pound bags of New Jersey all-purpose white potatoes for $3.99; that will make a lot of kugel.

Summer hangs on, though. Expect to see local corn, peaches, tomatoes and summer squashes through the end of the month.

Kauffman had some late summer strawberries this week. While not quite as flavorful as those we get in late May and early June, the $3.95 a half-pint local hothouse fruits were a lot more flavorful than winter berries. Ben’s also been selling blackberries for $4.95/pint (vs. $7.50 at Fair Food), but the season for these is just about done. Apple prices ranged from $1.99 (Galas) to $2.49 (Honey Crisps). Bartlett pears were $1.49. His pound price for peaches are $1.99 (yellow) and $2.99 (white).

Over at Fair Food, peaches were $1.75. They’ve also got a profusion of beets, with Red, Golden and Chioggas at $2/pound. Pluots and plums ranged from $2.50-$2.75, depending upon variety.

S&B meats is long on sausages and wursts, but short on fresh pork. Only the jost common cuts are available, including baby back ribs, tenderloins, sirloin roasts, filets, chops and stuffed chops.

A new variety of tomatoes has cropped up over the past couple weeks at both Fair Food and Headhouse: Golden Peach. They do look like small peaches. Livengood’s was selling them for $3.50/pint. Livengood’s also has Cape Gooseberries, also known as ground cherries. This relative of the tomatillo has the delightful taste of a combination of tomatoe and pineaple. (Useless fact: Cape Goosberries’ scientific name is physalis peruvianna; tomatillos are physalais philadelphica. Both, like tomatoes, are members of the nightshade family.)

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