Along with the hot weather comes a craving for fresh fruits and vegetables, which is why we love summertime to load up on fresh produce. Not only do we crave fruits and vegetables this time of year, it is also when a lot of produce is in season, which makes it the perfect time to indulge.
Buying produce that is in season has multiple benefits. Not only are you getting better ingredients but you will also be saving money. This will give you fresher tasting food that is easier on your wallet. It is also a perfect time to get picky eaters a little more interested in fruits and veggies as they taste so much more flavorful when they are in season.
Steer your search for recipes based on what is in season. Usually have sweet potatoes as a side? Sweet potatoes are in season during the fall/winter months so you might be paying more when buying these in August. Why pay more for sweet potatoes in the summer when you could have summer squash instead for a fraction of the cost?
Unsure what is in season? A local farmer’s market is a great place to guide you. Farmers generally will only harvest what is in season so you can be confident that what you are taking home is fresh and delicious. Don’t worry if you don’t have a local farmers’ market near you. We have a list below for what is in season during the summer months.
One of our favorite seasonal picks is watermelon! It never fails that when warm weather rolls around, our craving for watermelon does too. The most cost effective way to eat watermelon is by buying one whole and cutting it yourself, which can sometimes be a daunting task if you don’t know how to shop for one.
Just follow these 3 simple steps for picking out a perfectly ripe melon. First, simply pick it up; no matter the size, the watermelon should feel heavy in comparison to its respective size. Second, look for a creamy yellow splotch on the melon. Watermelons develop this splotch when they rest on the ground and that creamy yellow color means that it is ripe. Third, tap the watermelon. A ripe watermelon will have a hollow sound whereas a dull sound means it is either not ripe enough or past its peak of ripeness.
In Season for Summer:
|Bananas||Cherries||Lima Beans||Summer Squash|
For more healthy eating tips, contact the Thorek Memorial Hospital Food & Nutrition Department.