I love Saturdays as the small traders come with their produce from their little bit of land this is where I find the unusual the fruits or vegetables which are not raised commercially but just local grown like they have been for centuries…I am also pleased to see how many of the stalls now are ditching the plastic and using banana leaves to wrap foods…
Lively and bustling the markets here sell everything from meat, fish, fruit, vegetables, curry pastes, rice, clothing, garden pots and knives you name it it is sold here…On a Saturday I will share with you what I have found…
This week there were lots of mandarins in all shapes and sizes but the kids love the small juicy ones, dragon fruit is plentiful as were the mushrooms today some of which have already found their way into a carbonara for the kiddies…I have noticed that certain veggies were a lot smaller I think the lack of rain is hindering their normally prolific growth. Tomatoes are all lovely red just right for a base for chilli, curry or spag bol…There are also still lots of Dragon fruit a very pretty fruit which is not a favourite of mine but lovely in a smoothie…I think I have so much choice that I am getting picky…
The markets are still bustling here although many more people are wearing face masks than normal…Bars etc are on lockdown but the open-air markets are still operating fully…
I have heard in many western countries that the shelves are bare and many people are unable to get even the basics which is awful I really abhor the practice of stripping and stockpiling food without any thought for others…
Often though the fresh fruit and vegetable sections are offering a choice…Buy them as many veggies and fruits can be pickled, frozen, made into pesto…You could double quantities and freeze a portion or two…vegetable stirfries are lovely…
The fruit is plentiful here I would say all-year-round…Fruit and vegetables can be used in smoothies it will all help to boost your vitamin intake especially now with this Covid-19…
Here are some ideas from what you can add to a smoothie…
When I first saw this beautiful fruit I had only ever seen them dried before not fresh…it was something new to try… I just love it when I come across something I have not used or seen before…I get so excited.
Rosella grows easily here as it loves a tropical climate it is also a very pretty plant the species grown here in Thailand has broader leaves and pink rather than cream flowers and the leaves are used more than the fruits.
In Australia, it is still thought by many to be an exotic plant but has been mentioned in early Australian history and known by many as “Bush Tucker”
Also known by the more recognisable name of Hibiscus it is rich in Vitamin C and when made into a tea is promoted as a cure for colds if taken regularly.
A very nice sugar syrup can also be made for using in cocktails…Just saying!
The first time I made this jam …I only made a small amount as I was not familiar with the fresh fruit or the taste…but what a revelation it was beautiful…
- 500 gm Rosella fruit, seedpod separated from the Calyx and Bracts ( cut into small pieces)
- Approx 2 cups Sugar depending on the exact weight of fruit.
- Approx 2-3 cups Water
Firstly I soaked the fruits in cold water for about 20 minutes so as to not only clean them but remove any insects they can be susceptible to little bugs.
It was then a case of removing the seed pod from the inside of the fruit…Covering the seed pods with water and cooking them for about 20 minutes.
The seed pods contain naturally produced pectin…I simmered these for about 20 minutes and then removed the pods and disposed of them aka binned them. Remember to keep the cooking water.
I weighed the flowers before cooking them and then I measured exactly half their weight of sugar.
The Rosella flowers were then added to the cooking water in which the seed pods were cooked and the fruits cooked until they were softened and the liquid starts to turn syrupy which took about 10 minutes I then added the sugar and cooked the fruit until it softened and turned jam-like…
Remove from the heat and put in sterilised jars…
The key to this recipe is to weigh the fruit and do the exact amount of sugar and water.
This makes a very nice fruit preserve and one which I make again and again every year.
N.B. I now cut the fruit into smaller pieces rather than leave them whole.
Now you all know me well and know I can’t resist thinking would it be like if I added some ginger and chilli…very nice as it happens…
- 250 gm Rosella fruit
- 60 ml of sugar
- 2cm piece fresh ginger grated finely
- 2 red shallots chopped finely
- 5 ml red chilli powder/flakes
- 10 ml apple cider vinegar
- 375 ml of water
- A pinch of salt
Remove the red portions/calyces & discard the seed pods
Wash & place in a pan along with water, shallots, ginger, sugar, salt and chilli flakes
Bring to a soft rolling boil and cook until the liquid is greatly reduced. This takes approx 25-30 mins.
When the chutney is almost done, add the vinegar and stir well.
Remove the pan from the heat and allow to cool slightly and put in a sterilised glass container.
Lovely as a relish with cold/ hot meats or in a burger… with brie and freshly made bread, it is very nice.
That’s all for this weeks Saturday Market…
Thank you for reading this post I hope you have enjoyed it and the recipes enjoy your weekend and stay safe and healthy xxx