What's in season this June

What's in season this June

Growing conditions are slowing in Queensland this month, so local supply of vegetables to the Brisbane Produce Market have eased. But there’s still plenty of good eating and buying from around the country, including an abundance of that Aussie favourite, the Hass avocado. After an avo drought at the beginning of the year, the market is now flooded with them — time to serve up liberal amounts of toasted avo.

We’re big fans of strawberries from the Sunshine Coast and their quality and price are difficult to beat. In other fruit, Kiwi, lemons, limes, pears, Navel oranges, rockmelons, and watermelons are all in good supply. Look for the smaller sized winter variety of topless pineapples. While we have good supplies of all apple varieties, prices of Royal Gala and Pink Lady will rise over the next month.

Tomatoes are one of the best buys this week, with the market flooded with every variety except Roma. Prices are as low as you’ll see this year, so stock up and simmer your favourite Italian pasta sauces on the stove. It’s also peak time for snow peas and sugar snap peas, which are arriving from Bundaberg. These versatile vegies work well in stir-fries and salads, and their short cooking time makes them particularly appealing. Other stand-outs include Lockyer Valley-grown cabbage, capsicums from North Queensland, chillies and new season ginger. With cooler temperatures slowing the growth of cucumbers, beans, zucchini, and squash, prices are firming. Many varieties of mushrooms are plentiful this week. Despite their small size, mushrooms punch above their weight when it comes to nutrients so you can feel smug adding them to winter casseroles, stews and sauces. Fungi fans will love the fuller flavour of flat mushrooms — they’re great in risottos or stuffed and roasted — or for a milder flavour use cup mushrooms in pasta sauces and that old favourite, beef stroganoff.

This week’s top pick is the spring onion (shallots), one of the milder members of the allium family. Look for spring onions with firm, unblemished bulbs and bright green leaves. Eat them raw in salads and chicken and mayonnaise sandwiches, cook in stir-fries and tarts, or sprinkle as a garnish over teriyaki salmon or chicken.