5 Fall Foods That Are In Season and How to Choose the Best Ones
Food always tastes best when it’s fresh and in season. Nature dictates when the fruit is ready to eat by the changing of the seasons. Every plant has a unique growing period, making the most abundant and flavorful fruit at its peak season. Sometimes is can be hard to tell which fruit you should buy, and when it’s perfectly ripe to eat. Here’s a short list to make life easier at the grocery store.
- Apples: Everyone is familiar with apple picking season! Fall is the best time of year to find the juiciest and tastiest apples around. There are tons of different varieties to enjoy. There’s Honeycrisp, Pink Ladies, Gala, Fuji, Granny Smith, and Golden Delicious, to name a few. Honeycrisps are a favorite to snack on, while Granny Smiths are perfect for cooking pies. How do you know how to pick the best apples? Bigger apples aren’t necessarily better than smaller ones. Inspect the apple closely before purchasing. You want to look for any discoloration from bruising, and press on it to find any soft spots.
- Pears: The most flavorful time of year for pears is in the fall. Instead of gritty mush, you’ll have a flavorful, firm pear that will leave you wanting more. There are tons of varieties that come out this time of year, such as Bartlett, Forelle, Sugar Pears, and Seckels. Slice them up for an after dinner dessert, or have one for an afternoon snack. Pears ripen from the top down, so press on the top to see if it has a little bounce to know when it’s ready to eat.
- Grapes: The fall harvest is the time to find the best grapes. You can get different varieties this time of year such as champagne grapes, concord, and holiday seedless grapes, as well as the typical varieties you see in stores. When choosing your grape vine bunch, avoid wilted, wrinkled grapes. A green bunch should have a slight yellowish tint to it, and the red bunch should have a crimson undertone.
- Leafy Greens: The cooler months are the best times to find your leafy greens. That means lettuce, kale, spinach, and cabbage are best during the cold months, starting in fall. Try preparing something new with swiss chard, radicchio, collard greens, and turnip greens. There’s tons of antioxidants in any of the dark leafy greens. You want to find a bunch that doesn’t have any wilted leaves or any yellow discoloration.
- Beets: Beets have gotten a bad rap from our childhood, but they are a fantastic source for minerals and vitamins, and they can add a fun dimension to your plate. Beets are tubers, which means that they are a good form of carbs that will give you energy. They come in all different colors and flavors. When choosing your beets, look for firm and smooth beets with spy greens attached. When cooking with beets, use gloves and an apron to protect your hands and clothes from getting stained.
Look up a new recipe, and try it out with a fall favorite. Cook up some juicy apples with ham, or add some pears to your roast. It’s a delicious way to add in fall flavors and spice up an average dish.