Tuesday, January 09, 2007

6month-i-versary plus Fruit and Veggie Seasons

So wow, I didn't write about it, but we have been here for 6 months....as of last Saturday. It's so wild to think about how much has changed in our lives in this time and how far away from the reality that was our life just 7 months ago. And how do we feel? Are we happy? Do we like it here? Why did we come anyway? the questions come at me sometimes and I feel like I've answered them a thousand times.........feeling good so far, the kids are really happy, we're happy too; hubby's job satisfaction is a bit low now, plus his awful commute, yes we really do love it here, and why did we come? well you all know that story.......(if not, go find out why in the archives, ain li koach). But it's wierd to think we're passing this monument of time.....just had to note it.

And wanted to mention my fascination with the fruit and vegetables here in this country. Hubby always used to boast how the fruit and veggies here in Israel were 10 times better than in the states, fresher, etc. I never fully got it. Till now........ I find it so amazing that over the past 6 months, we have seen the change not only in the seasons of the weather, but also a change in the available veggies, and the size of the fruit and veggies. For example, there's the obvious, like watermelon...when we got here in July, we had watermelon daily, always kept some in the fridge, and love love loved it! Grapes too, WITH NO SEEDS, your choice, green or purple (red). That progressed into peaches and nectarines, and the grapes slowly stopped being so ripe. Suddenly one day, all of the grapes in the shuk and in the supermarket had SEEDS in them......a pain in the butt if you're a grown-up, and even worse if your a kid or if you're the parent of that kid who is suddenly forced to take all seeds out of each grape that the child eats. Bye-bye grapes.

Celery did a wierd thing in my eyes too........I may have even mentioned this before: in the late summer, the celery was tiny, skinny! I was convinced that my whole life of eating celery that I must have been duped, and must have been eating celery on mega hormones, cuz it was so much bigger than what I was finding here. But lo and behold........the celery all over has GROWN now, and I am finding normal gargantuan sized celery like I grew up eating. *Whew!*

So what else? Afarsimon (Parsimmons)--yuumy! started out hard, but still sweet, just crunchy like an apple, turned much softer as the weeks went on and seem to be on their way out.

Oh, and peppers, the red and yellow ones are my favorites......they were really cheap over the summer, skyrocketed now and definitely taste less sweet. Oh well, they'll be worth the wait.

Regular apples are pretty much a stagnant thing, I always maintain a basket on the counter. Oh, but the CLEMENTINAS.........they started out about a month ago really tiny....the ones we got this week are more like small orange size! And sweet!! yummmm. But sorry to report, that the clementinas here (essentially tangerines) are NOT seedless like the clementines in the states.

And what else? Pumpkin has been pretty popular lately, as are more winter squashes. I think they were more prevalent in Florida too as "winter veggies," but I didn't pay much attention.

Oh, one last thing..........STRAWBERRIES! I know this is similar as to in the states, cuz these guys were also exorbitant in the off season. They are finally starting to go down in price here, bought some last week in the shuk for 10 shekel a HALF kilo, that's about $2.50 a pound. But in the weeks before that, we bought some for double the price. oh well, they're sweet and delicious and the kids love them!

So that's my take on the fruit and veggie thing here. I know I'm forgetting some of my favorites, but the main point is that I've noticed how it keeps us more excited about when things get ripe and in season. I can't wait to see what the next 'hot' fruit or veggie is.........and that, my friends, is way different than in the states when a majority of the fruits and veggies in the produce dept. were imported from all over the world, or they were genetically grown in some greenhouse somewhere on the west coast!

ps. feeling better, just had a head cold. Now it's a crick in my back, fun. Need to get back in bed, it's 5 am here and I've been up for over an hour. Not smart.