Use This Seasonal Guide to Pick the Perfect Veggies

By Jacqueline Saguin
Pick the Perfect Veggies

There’s nothing more deceiving than buying vibrant foods only to unleash a bitter taste onto your taste buds after you’ve taken a bite. Shop smarter and not harder by knowing when it’s prime time to pick the perfect veggies, and find fresh ingredients at a local farmers market. Vegetables actually cost less when they’re in season! Use this guide to find out when is the best time to buy!

Veggie Guide

ALFALFA SPOUTS   XLook for crispy and bright sprouts, with buds intact.
ARTICHOKEX   Look for ones with a dusty green color. Avoid those with purple and profound blemishes.
ASPARAGUS XXXLook for a bright, rich green color all around with closed, compact tips.
BEETX  XLook for one that is firm and round, with a rich color and slender root. Avoid wilted tops.
BROCCOLIX  XLook for compact buds with crisp, green leaves.
BRUSSELS SPROUTS  XXLook for one that is bright green, compact and free of blemishes.
CABBAGEX  XLook for firm leaves without browning or markings. Darker leaves mean more flavor.
CARROTX   Look for ones that are plump, smooth and without cracks. Buy with stems attached so they keep their moisture.
CAULIFLOWERX  XLook for flowers that are clean and creamy white, with thick green leaves. Avoid spotted and separated flowers.
CELERYX  XLook for ones that are light green, compact and glossy.
CORNX XXPress against husk to feel individual kernels. Make sure there aren’t holes where kernels should be. Silk should be stiff and moist.
GARLICXXX Look for large, firm and silky skins.
GREEN BEAN XX Look for slender beans that are crisp, bright-colored, and unblemished.
KALEX XXLook for leaves that are moist, crisp, unwilted and unblemished.
LETTUCEX  XAvoid wilted, discolored leaves.
LEEKS   XLook for ones that are white and light green. Stalks should be crisp and firm. Avoid mostly dark green or yellowed tops.
MUSHROOMXXXXLook for clean, firm texture. They are delicate and highly perishable, so eat soon after purchase. Avoid dark browning or watery spots.
OKRA X  Look for ones that are bright green. Firm, but tender.
ONIONX XXLook for ones that feel heavy for their size with dry, papery skins, without signs of spotting or moistness. Shouldn’t have any smell.
PEASX X Look for firm, velvety pods that are medium green. Gently shake the pod. Avoid if there’s a rattling sound, as it’s likely they’re uneven in size.
POTATOX   Look for ones that are smooth and unbruised.
RADISHX  XLook for bright, perky greens. The leaves are the tell-tale of the root.
ROMANESCOX  XLook for ones that are dense and uniform in color.
RUTABAGA   XLook for ones that are unbruised and unblemished, with purpleish skin.
SPINACHX   Look for leaves that are bright and vivid green. Avoid wilted or liquidy leaves.
SWEET POTATO  XXLook for firm with smooth, bright, uniformly light tan skins.
TURNIPSX XXLook for ones that are firm, without any blemishes. Feels heavy for its size. If the greens are attached, they should be brightly colored and fresh

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