Summer is in full swing and each week brings fresh, mouthwatering new varieties of delicious summer produce. July is an especially good month for enjoying all that summer has to offer. Indulge the many varieties of sweet juicy melons, vibrantly flavored berries, and of course the summer stone fruits.
These fragile peach-like fruits, with their perfumed aroma and ultra-sweet flavor, contain impressive amounts of beta-carotene. They are also a fair source of potassium, and supply a good amount of fiber.
Avocados are commonly thought of as vegetables, but they are actually fruits. These delicious creamy fruits are known to be high in fat, however, keep in mind that it is a healthful fat. They add a creamy mellow flavor and texture that complement a wide variety of dishes.
Beets are grown year round, but June through October are the peak months. At the start of the season you can find young beets with small tender roots that are suitable for cooking whole. Fresh beets in season are usually sold with the top on. This greens are just as edible and delicious as the sweet beetroot!
Sweet, juicy cherries are one of summerâ€™s best treats. There are several delicious varieties to choose from, the most popular being the Bing, the Lambert, and the Rainier. Bing cherries are large, round, extra-sweet with purple-red flesh and a deep red skin that verges on black when fully ripe. Lambert cherries are a smaller, heart-shaped red cherry similar in taste and texture to the Bing. Rainier cherries have golden yellow flesh and skin with blushing rosy overtones, and they have a flavor that is sweeter more mellow than the bing.
Just in time for warm weather, cucumbers are crisp, cool and moistâ€”refreshing attributes due to their exceptionally high water content. These are a delicious snack, and a welcome addition to salads, sandwiches and cold soups such as gazpacho.
Super nutritious, with a clean flavor that is tart, yet sweet, pink grapefruits make a great snack. They are also excellent paired with many varieties of fish, and are great for added zing in salads.The three major types of grapefruit include white, pink/red and Star Ruby/Rio Red. Each variety has it's own unique flavor nuances, but they all have a clean refreshing, sweet-tart flavor. Grapefruits are traditionally halved, then eaten with a spoon, but they can also be peeled or sliced and eaten like an orange. Grapefruits are excellent paired with many varieties of fish, and are great for added zing in salads.
This crispy, sweet tasting, delicate flavored member of the Brassica family of vegetables is often referred to as "cabbage turnip." The bulb-like stem is similar to a turnip in flavor and is naturally sweet and can be eaten raw or steamed or shredded into soups and salads. It is a versatile, nutritious staple food throughout Asia and Eastern Europe, and recently has begun to gain more popularity in the US.
There are about 30 different varieties that will be available at the supermarket at different times during the summer. Ranging in color from black to pale yellow, and from sweet to tart in flavor, youâ€™ll only find each of these special varieties for a short period of time, so when you see a new one, be sure to take the opportunity to try it.
Rhubarb, which looks like a pink celery stalk, is botanically a vegetable, but it is used as a fruit, largely in pies and sauces. Field-grown rhubarb appears on the market from April through July. Rhubarb is sold loose and in 1-pound bags, like celery. Choose well-colored, good-sized, straight, firm crisp stalks. Avoid stalks that are limp. If the leaves are attached, they should look fresh and crisp; small leaves usually indicate younger, more tender stalks. Never eat the leaves. They are poisonous.
Not only are strawberries a delicious treat, they are incredibly good for you too. The deep red color of these berries comes from a high content of anthocyanins, a potent antioxidant that has repeatedly been shown to help protect cell structures in the body.
Nothing reflects the vibrant color and warmth of summer like tomatoes. While tomatoes are available year round, the flavor of fresh summer tomatoes simply canâ€™t be beat!