Macadamias, new season onions and national recycling week.

What is GREAT at the market? 

Freshly picked onions are absolutely delightful right now and as Tania from Summit Organics said when posting the photos of them in the containers drying (see below) the season only lasts about 12-16 weeks because onions do not store well in our sub-tropical humidity. The bottom right hand photo is the team harvesting onions at Summit this morning.Enjoy these locally grown onions while they are so very fresh. They taste so different to the stored onions that we are more accustomed to and that we use for most of the year.

Also harvesting onions now is Sylva Lining Organics so we are blessed with choice.  

This week we are shining the spotlight on Rainforest Foods .

Spring is a busy time on all our farms and this week we are shining the spotlight on Rainforest Food – the farm that brings us their delicious macadamia nuts and oil. Anthony and his team at Rainforest Foods were extra busy in September making and painting this season’s native bee boxes. Why? Native bees are extremely effective pollinators as their small size allows them to easily negotiate small, delicate flowers such as the macadamia flower. These tiny precious bees have only about a 500 metre flight range from their hive, so if placed in the middle of an orchard they will only work flowers within this range.
So back to Rainforest Foods story … they spilt some of their hives to increase capacity and ensure they were ready to catch the last few weeks of the macadamia flowering season. This is the time when there is plenty of food for the split hives to build themselves up again before things slow down towards next autumn. Anthony said that “we have enough native vegetation on the farm to support a good number of hives throughout the year when the macadamias are not flowering, and of course they love the Davidson’s plum flowering, which is just starting to come on now.”
All their macas are simply delicious and now is the perfect time to stock up chocolate macadamias, salted macas and more for Christmas gift packs.  Macadamia nut are perfect on grazing plates and for your guests to enjoy during the festive season – or any time. I enjoy a handful of macas a day. 

Have you tried their turmeric, lemon myrtle and chilli roasted macadamias? Wednesday being market day is treat day and I often buy a packet of these (they only come in small packs) or their garlic and rosemary roasted macadamias to nibble on while I shop. Both are scrumptious.

Rainforest Foods macadamia spread is also delicious and perfect on toast and crackers or it makes a great base for pesto. AND if you like to make nut milks it makes this task so easy. I place a heaped tablespoon into 250ml of filtered water in my Vitamix and blend like crazy before adding the remaining 750ml to make a litre of macadamia nut milk. Fresh nut milk in minutes!

This week is National Recycling Week

In this world where there is far too much waste we know many of our customers want to reduce plastic and recycle packaging whenever possible. We know that many of you appreciate and support the stallholders who encourage recycling and/or plastic free in its many forms. So here is a brief summary of these stallholders:

Blueberry Fields and Tallogum Raspberries – both give you a discount when you return your bucket. The first bucket of berries costs a little more than all subsequent purchases, so do remember to bring your bucket back. This is a fabulous incentive! 

Rainforest Foods has responded to your requests for macadamia oil and continue the tradition established by Nudgel Nuts, refilling your macadamia oil bottle at the market — so BYO your own bottle.

Raw Earth Organic – Jeremy encourages you to BYO bottles and refill or return these to be recycled. Jeremy has his kombucha on tap so you simply select your favourite flavour and refill. He is happy to fill these for you AND give you 50 cents off for your effort.

Spice Palace – Rob gives you a discount on your purchase if you bring back your jars from previous purchases. He told me that Duska washes many jars every week for the purpose of reusing – and yes they are fully compliant with health regulations. You can also refill your BYO olive oil bottle too – it is that simply. Bring your own bottle and wait while it is refilled.

Tweed River Pecans offer their 300 gram pecans in reusable glass jars! The pecans are the same price per gram, but you pay $1 deposit on your jar which will be refunded when the jar is returned. Kaye McNaught from TRP’s can be found at Spice Palace every week helping Rob and sharing insights about all aspect of their pecan growing story too. TRP’s has large packets of pecans as always. These zip lock bags are reusable – good for storing vegies or dried foods. For those pecan lovers who like to purchase a kilo or more, Kaye is happy to take your container home to fill and return the following week. 

Woodland Valley Farm – health regulations do not permit egg producers to reuse your egg cartons but they do have loose eggs so you can BYO and refill your own egg carton. This is such a great service. Bring your own containers to collect your pasta and Jodie will fill and bring it back the following week.

Yogi Nectar – Matt is happy to take your bottles and reuse/recycle them according to the health regulations. They are unable to refill them but they are repurposed.

Many of our stallholders and customers are keen to keep waste out of landfill. Some people even BYO their own plate and cutlery for any food they want to eat at the market and of course you can BYO produce bags for all your fruit and vegie purchases.