While most stone fruits are perfectly delicious to bite into as you would an apple, they’re also great in salads or salsas, grilled or even baked!
We get most of our early summer, locally grown stone fruits from Sweet Home Ranch in Dinuba, Calif., a certified California Clean operation. We’ve worked with Sweet Home Ranch for many years to bring in some rare stone fruits that you’d be hard-pressed to find in other stores because we work with directly with the growers. Sweet Home Ranch allows their fruit to ripen on the tree so it comes to our markets bursting with flavor.
California Clean fruits are grown using no organic or synthetic pesticides. This certified system protects the environment, supports small family farms and delivers extraordinary produce at an affordable price. It’s one of the first eco-label movements in the state that works to discover and promote a cleaner, more eco-friendly way to produce nut and stone fruit crops.
Yellow nectarines have a bit more acid than white nectarines, giving them a sweet-tart flavor. White nectarines have a more mellow, mostly all sweet flavor.
If you select fruits that are still on the hard side, allow them to sit out at room temperature until they have some give when gently pressed. Once they’re softened, store them in the refrigerator.
Here are a few of our favorite nectarine recipes:
Fresh Greens Salad with Nectarines, Blueberries, Feta and Glazed Walnuts
Fresh, light and flavorful, this salad would be a great complement to any grilled meats, especially when made with peppery arugula. Additionally, you could add strips of grilled chicken to the salad and serve it for lunch or dinner.
This is delicious on fish or pork tacos, or simply as a chip dip. If you feel like taking a more hors d’oeuvres route, serve it as a bruschetta topper for lightly toasted crostini. Adapted from Cooking Light.
Nectarine & Prosciutto Pizza with Pesto and Fresh Mozzarella
Baking this pizza on locally made Viccolo corn meal crust makes all the difference; it’s absolutely delicious and the flavors pair well with the basil pesto and nectarines. You can use peaches in place of the nectarines if you wish.
Grilled Nectarines with Burrata, Basil and Prosciutto
Grilling fruit caramelizes its natural sugars, giving the fruit a warm depth of flavor. In this case, grilling develops an almost cobbler-like flavor in these nectarines! Paired with the savory prosciutto, the creamy burrata and the herbaceous basil, you get a summer dish that’s simply divine served with a glass of chilled wine.
Summertime Peach & Garlic Grilled Shrimp with Nectarine, Cucumber & Lime Chop Salad
Fresh, fruits, grilled shrimp and Sigona’s Summertime Peach White Balsamic just scream summer. The shrimp take on fantastic flavor from the marinade and pair delightfully with the fresh flavors of the chop salad.
Grilled Watermelon Pizza with Stone Fruit, Quick-Pickled Shallots, Walnuts and Blue Cheese
While we usually like to keep our fruits raw, sometimes summertime calls for throwing fruit on the grill! Grilling fruit brings out its natural sugars, giving the fruit more of a caramelized flavor. Pairing grilled watermelon with savory, quick-pickled shallots and salty, creamy and flavorful cream cheese makes for a salty-sweet treat that’s perfect for the dog days of summer. One personal-sized watermelon makes about 12-16 wedges, depending on size.
Heirloom Tomato Salad with Nectarines, Fresh Mozzarella, Crumbled Bacon and Arugula, Tossed in a Summertime Peach and Basil Vinaigrette
This recipe, adapted from Sunset magazine, is what Sunset calls a beach-ready spin on Caprese salad. You’ll love the flavor nectarines bring to these traditionally paired ingredients, and your friends will ask for your peach balsamic source.
Carmelo Sigona emigrated in 1912 from Sicily, bringing with him the tradition of making his own wine. His grandson and namesake, Carmelo Sigona, co-owner of Sigona's Farmers Market, has fond memories of his grandfather making wine and serving it at family meals on Sundays. After years of wanting to make his own wine just like Grandpa Sigona, present-day Carmelo has finally made his dreams come true. Tune in for more.
Nothing is more rewarding to Rob Sigona, our passionate produce buyer, than taking a road trip to visit one of Sigona's favorite farmers.
About a five hour drive from the Bay Area, nestled in the Sierra Nevada foothills, is the town of Springville. There you will find a place seemingly untouched by time; a place called home to orange grower Ron Matik of Pleasant Oaks Ranch.
Since 1984 Ron has grown some of the best heirloom navel oranges in the state, if not the world: the heirloom Washington Navel.
"I have yet to taste an orange that is better than ours,” says Matik. “Maybe some with the same sweetness, but never better.”
And Sigona's agrees!
Heirloom Washington Navels are the variety that got the whole California citrus market booming all those years ago. It takes special attention from the farmer to tend to the soil and the variety to produce such outstanding fruit.
"Small farmers, such as Ron, are a dwindling breed,” says Rob Sigona. “They’re passionate caretakers of the the land that produce exceptional quality; they are the rare gems."
It is an achievement to find such great tasting oranges to bring in for our customers. We are excited to announce we’ll get a load of specially picked and packed heirloom Washington Navels in our store this week, delivered directly from Pleasant Oaks Ranch.
So, come on by Sigona's to enjoy a slice of California’s prized history…for FREE! You can get a bag of free Pleasant Oaks Ranch oranges starting today through March 5th with your coupon when you spend $30 or more in the store.
A Tale of Two Carmelos and their love of Zinfandel