A note to our customers…Various fruits and vegetables reach their peak flavor at different times of the year. Some of the questions and answers that appear in this section will change periodically to reflect the fruits and vegetables that are currently in season. Any questions or comments are appreciated.
Q: Where are you located?
A: We are located at 33152 Seven Mile Road in Livonia, just two blocks east of Farmington Road.
Q: What are your hours?
A: We are open seven days a week. Monday - Saturday, our hours are 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Sunday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Q: Where do you get your produce from?
A: Joe selects our produce fresh every morning from the farmers at the Eastern Market.
Q: How long will fruits and vegetables stay fresh in my refrigerator?
A: You should use fresh fruits and vegetable within five days after purchase to ensure the best quality and taste. Stopping in to buy fresh produce twice a week is ideal.
Q: What is the best cooking apple? The best pie apple?
A: If you are planning to make applesauce, then McIntosh, Empire or Courtland apples are all good choices. If you are baking an apple pie, try a Rome or a Spy.
Q: How do you pick out a good cantaloupe?
A: A prime cantaloupe should be heavy for its size, which indicates that the seed pocket is small and that the melon is dense and sweet. In the summer months, the cantaloupe’s skin, called the netting, should have a rough texture with a slightly yellowish cast. As the warm days are accompanied by cooler nights in the fall, the melons will take on a slightly greenish cast.
Q: Which grape is the sweetest?
A: Both red and green grapes are known for their sweetness. The light dust that appears on the fruit comes from the bloom of the grape and is an indicator of the fruit’s freshness. In selecting green grapes, look for a slightly yellow or amber finish on the fruit itself.
Q: What’s the difference between the various types of onions I see at Joe’s Produce?
A: The red is a mild onion that is often used for its rich, contrasting color in salads and casseroles. The Yellow, or Spanish, onion is popular for its versatility; its flavor is well suited for everything from cooking to dressing hamburgers. White onions are among the mildest onions available, with the sweet Vidalia from Georgia among the most popular. While the Vidalia onion is a favorite during the spring and summer months, Joe’s Produce offers a variety of sweet onions as they come into season throughout the year.
Q: What’s the difference between a hydroponic and a vine-ripened tomato?
A: Hydroponic tomatoes are grown in water, rather than soil, and are treated with fewer pesticides than traditionally-grown tomatoes. The vine-ripened tomato is ripened on the vine before being transported from warm climates like Mexico year-round.
Q: What is the best way to prepare winter squash?
A: Winter squash can be flavorfully prepared in either the oven or the microwave. For oven preparation, cut the squash in half and place it skin down on a cookie sheet. Cook it at 350 degrees for 35 to 45 minutes, until it is fork-tender. For microwave preparation, cut the squash in half and cook it on high power for 20 minutes. Rotate the squash one-half turn, then cook it for an additional 15-20 minutes, until it is fork-tender.