I had a particularly lengthy purchase order with Gejo of Malipayon Farms a couple of Fridays ago and this is just part of the delivery… Mostly for use in a TV shoot in Cebu on Saturday (mum’s the word on the show for now), I couldn’t help but marvel at the variety and freshness of this basket of goodies that showed up at home… With produce like this, it’s hard to mess up any dish you make from them.
This is the ultimate example of “fresh mint leaves” — bright green, hydrated leaves, no dark edges and wilted greens, firm stems. Wow! I used some of these in a batch of Vietnamese shrimp spring rolls. They garnished fruity desserts and we used them in salads.
Several varieties of cherry tomatoes and fragrant stalks of lemongrass. The lemongrass was used in the “shoot” as were some of the tomatoes, but I kept half the tomatoes for home use in salads, salsas, etc.
Flat leaf or Italian Parsley. We try to have this in the fridge all the time. Garnish for pasta and meat dishes, blitzed into spreads, used to flavor stocks.
Multi-colored stalks of Swiss chard, which I later used in a chorizo, bean and chard soup. This is a really healthy veggie, and we need to eat more of it.
Hefty chunks of galanggal root, a fragrant cousin of ginger.
Amazing young spinach. I didn’t want to waste this in such an incredibly fresh state, so I immediately used it in a salad with a dressing of oil, mustard, sherry vinegar, salt and pepper that was made in a skillet and used to just wilt the greens ever so slightly, then topped this all with thin shavings of jamon serrano. I also threw in some cherry tomatoes for color, texture and flavor.
Purple basil, tastes similar to the green sweet basil, but with such a striking color. Great for garnishing dishes.
Nearly half a kilo of fresh dill, used for another big batch of gravlax.
Baby native radishes, which honestly, I haven’t found a use for other than being added to some shrimp sinigang. Thanks Gejo, for such a wonderful bounty of produce. All of this is grown in Tagaytay, just an hour away from Makati. Now imagine if several groceries and delis had vegetable sections that regularly included produce of this quality. I hope that day isn’t too far off in the future. Everything we prepared using this produce really let the veggies and herbs shine through.