Arriving to grape fanfare
What’s in season: Southern California grape season is here, typically starting during the hot months of summer and extending into early fall, with stands featuring a wide variety of the fruit, from early-maturing Black Emerald to crisp Summer Royal, plump seedless Flame and seedless Thompson grapes. While you can find green Thompson grapes at the supermarket, look for the golden, almost amber colored ones at farmers markets for real depth of flavor. Check with the farmer for particular flavor characteristics and suggestions for using.
What to cook: Add fresh grapes to salads, parfaits and cheese platters for both color and flavor. Throw them on the grill or roast until blistered to bring out jammy, caramelized notes. They are perfect served alongside meat, chicken and fish. Dot fresh focaccia with dark grapes or sauté Concord grapes for a simple sauce to pair with pork tenderloin. Slice white or green grapes and add them to rice stuffing with roasted chicken, or pickle grapes for an easy appetizer.
What’s on the horizon: Normally a fall staple, apples, including Early Gold and Gala, are just beginning to appear at select stands.
CONCORD grapes add an irresistibly juicy touch to f latbread. Go online for a look at grape recipes, latimes.com/food.
PICKLED GRAPES accompany this grilled pork chop. They can also work as an appetizer.