A Guide to Summer Vegetables
Summer is upon us, and so are the fruits and vegetables that this season brings. Eating based on the season is nutritious, environmentally and economically friendly because the foods will be more available. During Texas summer months we can enjoy a few refreshing seasonal fruits and vegetables such as peaches, pears, apples, tomatoes, watermelon, cucumber, artichokes, eggplant, and zucchini! Four of the summer vegetables have been highlighted in this article that grow well in my Texas climate. Below are tips for you on how to purchase, store, and prepare a few vegetables.
Here's a few tips when trying to incorporate these seasonal veggies:
Artichokes are one of the world’s oldest foods! The part we consume is considered the flower of the plant and is high in fiber, vitamin C, and potassium.
Purchasing: Choose artichokes with no sign of spoilage much as bruising or mold.
Storage: Artichokes are surprisingly perishable. Store artichoke in a plastic bag in the refrigerator.
Preparation: You can pickle artichoke hearts, steam or bake the whole vegetable according to a recipe.
Zucchini squash are considered a summer squash and have been grown in the U.S. since the 1920’s! They are good sources of potassium, vitamin B6, and have high levels of vitamin C.
Purchasing: Choose zucchini squash with smooth and shiny skin
Storage: Store zucchini squash in a sealed container in the refrigerator
Preparation: Wash before cutting. Can be eaten raw or cooked.
Eggplants are part of the same family with tomatoes and potatoes and are a great source of fiber!
Purchasing: Choose eggplants that are glossy, firm, and vibrant colored.
Storage: Eggplant will store well in a cool, dry place. It’s best not to refrigerate.
Preparation: Slice eggplants and salt lightly to remove bitterness. Use as indicated in a recipe
Cucumbers are crisp and refreshing and PERFECT for summer. And out of them come some of my favorite things...pickles!!
Purchasing: Cucumbers should be firm and rounded at the ends and deep green in color
Storage: Store cucumbers in the fridge
Preparation: Wash cucumbers before slicing. You may want to peel skin off. Best if eaten raw, but can also be cooked.
Interested in incorporating more cucumbers? Check out my new recipe here.