Enjoy Fresh Fruit of the Season in SWFL

Enjoy Fresh Fruit of the Season in SWFL

You know what makes Southwest Florida great besides the sunshine and beautiful beaches? Fresh fruit! It’s peak mango and lychee season down here right now, and people come from all over to enjoy these local fruit fresh off the trees.

Earlier in July, Pine Island hosted MangoMania, a summer festival that celebrates the harvest of the island’s mangoes. Florida happens to be the largest producer of mangoes in the United States. In fact, Lee County is one of the state’s leading commercial producers of the crop.

For the freshest fruit in Florida, people can visit Farmers Markets year round. These farmers markets in Southwest Florida area are filled with dozens of vendors selling produce, baked goods, flowers, plants, art, and more.

Here are a few year-round farmers markets where you can pick yourself a fresh-off-the-tree mango or lychee this season.

Fort Myers
Downtown Fort Myers Farmers Market: Thursdays, 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. Centennial Park.

Alliance for the Art Green Market: Saturdays, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Alliance for the Art’s building.

Cape Coral

Surfside Sunset Market: Tuesdays, 3 to 8 p.m. The Shops at Surfside.

Now that you’ve picked up a bag full of Florida-grown fruit, what should you make with them? Here are a couple recipes for you to try out! Bon appetite!

Mango Enchiladas

Ingredients:

3 mangoes, peeled and sliced
6 (8-inch) flour tortillas
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/3 cup margarine
1/2 cup natural sugar
1/2 cup, packed brown sugar
1/2 cup water

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Sautée mangoes with 1 teaspoon of butter until almost soft.
Spoon mangoes evenly onto tortillas, sprinkle with cinnamon.
Roll up tortillas and place seam side down on lightly greased 8×8-inch baking pan.
Bring margarine, sugars and water to a boil in a medium sauce pan.
Reduce heat and simmer, stirring constantly for 3 minutes.
Pour sauce evenly over tortillas; sprinkle with extra cinnamon on top if desired.
Bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes.
Serve with ice cream if desired.

Recipe courtesy of: freshfromflorida.com

Lychee Muffins

Makes: 12 muffins

Ingredients

3/4 cup whole wheat flour
3/4 cup unbleached flour
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1 cup lowfat buttermilk
1/4 cup fat-free egg substitute
3 Tbsp lychee jam or puree
1/3 cup chopped fresh or canned lychees

Directions
Line 12 muffin cups with paper baking cups or spray them with nonstick spray.

In a medium bowl, whisk the flours, sugar, baking soda, cinnamon and nutmeg.

In a small bowl, combine the buttermilk, egg substitute and fruit spread. Add the liquid ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir just until moistened. Fold in the chopped berries.

Divide the batter among the muffin cups. Bake at 350ºF until the muffins are lightly browned and a toothpick inserted in the center of one comes out clean, 20 to 25 minutes.

Recipe courtesy of: lycheesonline.com

Move to Southwest Florida 

The fruit in Florida is the freshest around. From January to December, there’s something growing down here in this beautifully warm climate for you to enjoy fresh off the tree or from a garden. Fresh produce is just another thing that makes SWFL living so great. If you’re thinking about moving to the SWFL area, contact realtor (and SWFL local) Kim Arasimowicz to look at some great homes today! To reach her, call 239-214-2039 or click here.