Monday, May 16, 2011

Buyers Tip Sheet

Fresh Vegetables and Fruits 
In choosing quality produce, experience is always the best teacher. Here are a few pointers in selecting quality fruits & veggies.

Stalks should be tender and firm.
Tips should be close and compact.  
Choose stalks with very little white.
They tend to be more tender. 
Since asparagus toughens rapidly, 
use asparagus soon after purchasing.

Choose plump, solid berries with bright color.  
Avoid stained containers. 
This indicates wet or leaky berries.  
Check carefully for mold.  
Blackberries and raspberries with 
clinging caps may be under ripe.  
Strawberries without caps may be too ripe.

Flower clusters on broccoli and cauliflower 
should be tight and close together. 
Brussels sprouts should be firm and compact. 
Broccoli, flower heads, or florets,  
should be a darker green than the stalk.  
Look for stalks that are firm but not rubbery or tough.
Choose cauliflower with bright green leaves and 
compact, creamy white florets. 
Older cauliflower will have little black mold spots 
and a yellowish tinge.  ew.
With brussels sprouts, use color as an indicator of freshness.
Leaves should be bright green and fresh looking.
Give sprouts a squeeze to make sure they are firm, 
tight and compact, not puffy.
Check stems to make sure they are clean and not discolored.
 Look for blemish free, smooth green skin 
without discoloration.
  The outside will be bumpy,
but there shouldn't be tears in the skin.
A fresh cucumber looks a little bit plump. 
A not-so-fresh cucumber has tiny wrinkles in the skin and
  looks like it's starting to deflate.
Make sure cucumber is firm and not squishy.  
Check both ends.

Look for a firm, symmetrical watermelon 
free from bruises, cuts or dents.
Since watermelon is 92% water, 
lift it up and make sure it is heavy for its size.  
Turn it over to check the underside. 
It should have a creamy yellow spot indicating
where it sat on the ground and ripened in the sun.
If it is white or pale green on either side,
it is not ripe.

Pick it up, take a deep breath 
and give it a good deep whiff.
 If it omits a musky sweet fruity smell, you have a winner. 
Can't smell anything?  
It will most likely be tasteless so put it back.
Test it's ripeness by pressing 
on the opposite end of the stem.  
It should give a little.

When a honeydew's rind has a creamy to yellowish color, 
it's ripe. 
Immature honeydews are whitish green.
Always avoid overly soft melons.

Oranges, Grapefruit, & Lemons
Choose those heavy for their size.  
Thinner, smoother skins usually indicate more juice.  
Most skin markings do not affect quality.  
Oranges with a slight greenish tinge may be 
just as ripe as fully colored ones.  
Light or greenish yellow lemons are 
more tart than deep yellow ones.  
Avoid citrus fruits showing withered, sunken, or soft areas. Generally, the sweeter and more fragrant the smell, 
the fresher the piece of fruit is.
Winter is the season of citrus fruits, 
& offers the best selection to choose from.


Avoid those with any signs of decay.  
Select firm, fairly evenly shaped with even skin color.
Deep orange colored sweet potatoes 
have the most nutritional value.
Bronze to rosy skins are soft and sweet when cooked.  
Yellow to light brown ones are firmer and less moist.
Never store in the refrigerator.
Doing so will produce a hard core in the center.
Store in a cool, well ventilated, dry container.
For best flavor & freshness, 
use within 7-10 days after purchase.



Mary said...

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(Fashion.MakeUp.LifeStyle) said...

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