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Tasty Morsels: Kiwi sparks ideas for marinade, salad dressing

By: Susie Iventosch
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About two weeks ago I was on a mission to find something fresh and perhaps a bit unusual for a sauce to go with steak. Not after anything in particular, I drove down to Newcastle Produce to see what was in season. The minute a beautiful bag of kiwifruit jumped out at me, the search was over! It seemed that a kiwi with a little cilantro, lime juice and garlic would make a delicious grilling sauce for steak, and maybe even good when combined with bay shrimp and avocado in a salad. My sons were over for dinner the night of this experiment, and later that evening I received an email from the older one. “Madre,” he said. “I was very skeptical of steak with kiwi. But it was awesome!” This kiwifruit was from the Thomas Ranch in Auburn. Owners Craig and Denise Thomas run the ranch with a regular dose of help from Craig’s mom Dorothy Thomas, 84. “My mom helps out with sales, weeding and pruning,” said Craig Thomas. To me, this is very impressive and inspirational! The ranch, better known for mandarins, also produces several smaller crops including kiwifruit and pluots (plum-apricot hybrid.) Though many of the local kiwifruit crops were damaged in a late April frost, Thomas said their harvest provided enough to supply a few local markets. According to the Thomas Ranch Web site, kiwifruit has a high level of Vitamin C – almost twice that of an orange –and it contains other essential vitamins and minerals, too. Local kiwifruit will be available at Newcastle Produce for another several weeks, in the event you’d like to give these recipes a try! Kiwifruit-Teriyaki Marinade for steak (or chicken) (Enough for 4-5 Rib-eye steaks) 4 kiwi fruit –peel and puree 2 of the kiwi fruit, and peel and slice the other two, set aside ¼ cup white wine Juice of 1 whole lime ¼ cup soy sauce 2 tablespoons brown sugar ¼ cup fresh cilantro leaves, chopped ½ teaspoon grated fresh ginger 1 small clove garlic, minced 2 tablespoons olive oil Place all ingredients except sliced kiwi, in a container with a tight-fitting lid. Shake well. Divide marinade in two, and pour half over the meat to marinate for at least several hours or overnight in refrigerator. Save remainder of marinade to serve over cooked meat. To cook meat, remove from marinade and grill on barbecue to desired doneness. Serve with sliced kiwi and drizzle remaining marinade over top of both. Avocado, Kiwi fruit Shrimp Salad with Kiwi-lime-cilantro dressing (Serves 4) 1 head butter lettuce, torn into bite-sized pieces ½ pound bay shrimp 1-2 avocados, peeled and cut into bite-sized pieces 2 kiwifruit, peeled and sliced into ¼-inch slices One recipe of Kiwi-cilantro dressing (recipe below) Kiwi-cilantro dressing Juice of one lime 3 tablespoons pureed kiwi fruit (about 1-2 kiwifruit, depending on size) 3 tablespoons white wine vinegar 8 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil ¼ cup minced fresh cilantro leaves 1 small clove garlic, minced 1/8 teaspoon ginger, minced S&P to taste Mix all and shake vigorously. Refrigerate until ready to use. Susie can be reached at suziven@gmail.com. ---------- Thomas Ranch Open for direct sales during mandarin season 8265 Mount Vernon Rd Auburn, CA 95603 (530) 823-0350 www. thomasranchmandarins.com