Certified Farmers Market Fresh Pick of the Week: Asian Pears!
Locally-grown Asian Pears top the list of Fresh Picks from the valley’s three Certified Farmers’ Markets this week. Although originally from East Asia, Asian Pears are now also grown in Australia, New Zealand, and in the United States (mostly California). They differ from the more commonly available European Pear varieties in texture, flavor and overall shape. While European Pears are soft and ovoid in shape, Asian Pears are crisp, with a fresh, almost grainy texture that is more like an apple. They are typically round, large fruits, with a high water content. As a result, they are most often eaten fresh, and rarely used for jellies and jams. The Asian Pears at the market come from Ha’s Apple Farm in the mountains around Tehachapi, California. These mountains, with elevations over 4,000 feet, give the pears the necessary changes of season they need to develop into delicious fruit.
Did you know: Asian Pears are so popular in South Korea that the city of Naju has a Pear Museum and Pear Orchard for tourists. In Korea, Asian Pears are known as “bae.”
Price: $ 2.75 per pound.
Also in Season: Potatoes, Celery, Green Onions, FRESH and DRIED Herbs, Eggs, Dates, Almonds, Oranges, Grapefruit, Chard, Eggplant, Squash, Onions, Garlic, Apples, Shallots, Beets, Green Beans, Carrots, Tomatoes, Green Tomatoes, Peppers, Lettuces, Parsley, Mint, Broccoli, Cabbage, Spinach, Radishes, Leeks, Brussels Sprouts, Asparagus, Cherimoyas, Dates . . . . PLUS, incredible artisan breads, fresh meats, cheese, fresh raw honey, California olives/olive oil/vinegars, and a wide variety of exotic Orchids and flowers.
Palm Desert EVENING Market: NEW HOURS in Palm Desert only (4pm to 8pm). The Market is held each Wednesday at 72-559 Highway 111 (adjacent to the Palm Desert Chamber of Commerce).
Palm Springs Certified Farmers’ Market: The Market is held each Saturday morning from 8am to 12:30pm at 2300 Baristo Rd. (adjacent to The Camelot Theatres)
La Quinta Certified Farmers’ Market: The Market is held held each Sunday morning from 8am to 12:30pm in Old Town La Quinta at 78100 Main Street (off Calle Tampico).
The Certified Farmers’ Markets are the Coachella Valley’s only State and County Certified Farmers’ Markets. That means all the fruits, vegetables, meats and other products that are on sale at the markets have been grown on California Certified farms. In addition, almost all the farms are located within a 90 mile radius of the markets (thus reducing the carbon footprint), and many of the products sold are “USDA Certified Organic.”
All Certified Farmers’ Markets accept CalFresh EBT Cards, WIC Farmers’ Market Checks, and Senior Farmers’ Market Checks. The Markets also offer Market Bucks that can be purchased using charge cards or cash, then used at the market for purchases.
The Certified Farmers Markets are sponsored by the Palm Springs Cultural Center, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, which was established to encourage the development of the cultural arts in the Coachella Valley with a specific focus in the areas of film, fine art, live performance, dance, music, and community festivals. The Center is dedicated to advancing education, to nurturing community-wide participation in the cultural arts, and to sponsoring scholarship awards for deserving individuals.