Market Report 2.5.19

Orders or queries? Contact our expert buyers directly or call 020 7720 7758 / orders@eurosalad.co.uk.

WILD ASPARAGUS * PRODUCT OF THE WEEK

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The wait is over - you can stop asking us! Wild asparagus is in!! This delicate veg has a wonderful flavour somewhere between traditional green and white asparagus, with a bit of nutty Jerusalem artichoke thrown in. More and more chefs have it on their spring menus and it's even popping up in greengrocers with a more discerning clientele. Here at ESC, we're simple folk and like ours lightly steamed with a butter and squeeze of lemon juice.

WEEKLY HIGHLIGHTS FROM MILAN MARKET

Our buyer Tess says: “In Milan the weather is beautiful - chilly overnight but warming up quickly. However the high and low temperatures has shocked a few things: monk's beard and some more delicate herbs have momentarily slowed their growth.

This week I’ve found huge morels, chive flowers, erba Saint Pietro, lemon basil, green and red mustard, wood sorrel …. The much loved pink beef heart tomato has started as has Sorrentino beef heart. New beans are in season now - fine green beans, snake beans and white flat beans.

Italian watermelons are just starting - only boxes of baby ones at the moment. The Tropea rosso bunched onions are getting bigger! We hope to see the start of red basil, elderflower, Borlotti beans and more delicious stone fruit!

Tess also recommends: peas, broad beans, melons (smooth and rough skin), Abate pears, courgettes (white, round, Romanesco), courgette flowers, aubergines, cedro, pears (Abate, Decano).

CONTACT TESS, OUR ITALIAN BUYER: 07766 654732 / tess@eurosalad.co.uk

WEEKLY HIGHLIGHTS FROM RUNGIS MARKET

Our buyer Andy says:Stone fruits are starting to creep in. Peaches and nectarines are now starting to become more prominent, still Spanish, but nice fruit and good sizes. Apricots from Spain are also tip top.

The first of the Provence cherries have arrived but are making eye-watering amounts of money, so oligarchs or Premier League footballers only at the moment.

Stunning French and Spanish Charentais melons are providing a bit of welcome sunshine, French are better quality if you want something top notch, but Spanish is where the value is at. Summer truffles are now in, and won't break the bank.”

Andy also recommends: wet garlic, Panach berries, Noirmoutier potatoes, Saveur de Chailly tomatoes, Spanish Blue Raf tomatoes, Ile de Re potatoes.

CONTACT ANDY, OUR FRENCH BUYER: 07810 504512 / andy@esc-foods.co.uk

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Our buyer Gaelle says: “From Morocco, no red chilies in sight .... the season could be almost be over already due to the cold wave over a month ago. We might have to wait until September or October for new season crops. Green chilies are good quality but small volumes only.

From France, courgette price is reasonable with excellent quality. Banana shallot price has reached a scary high and quite a few growers are already out of stock until the new season end of July. Root vegetables are still plentiful and good quality. Volumes of cauliflowers from Brittany are slightly higher this week. Baby artichokes are beautiful and available daily. We have even seen the first few pallets of artichokes at French auction early this week - volumes are still very low though.

From Spain, the first beautiful cherries have reached the market, but the heavy rain of last week has limited the volumes. Artichokes are almost end of season, courgettes are still available, and even the good quality ones are very accessible. Chilies are extremely hard to find.”

CONTACT GAELLE, ESC DIRECT: +33 789 866 675 / esc.direct@hotmail.fr

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