If you’re always vying for the next great superfood or adding new textures and flavors to your cooking, uncommon fruits and veggies might just be the answer. Because many people want a certain level of familiarity with their diet, many of these have been overlooked. But that doesn’t mean you should do the same.
For some delicious produce that adds fresh flavors and nutrients to your diet and can even be grown and bought locally, here are a few ideas to add to your diet and cooking. We might not supply all these products, but we always love sharing produce tip ideas you’ll love in your kitchen.
Grown in the temperate climates of northern California, Michigan, and Wisconsin, kohlrabi is a vegetable that resembles a cross between a turnip and a cabbage. It has a mild, slightly sweet taste and a crisp texture. Packed with vitamin C, fiber, and potassium, kohlrabi is a wonderful addition to salads or stir-fries.
Popular in Central American and Mexican cuisine, jicama is now cultivated in the southwestern United States and Hawaii. A root vegetable, jicama has a slightly sweet, nutty flavor, and crunchy texture that lies somewhere between a potato and an apple. Jicama can be eaten raw in salads or used as a healthy alternative to potato chips. It’s a good source of fiber, vitamin C, and potassium.
Most famous for its addition to smoothies and juices, dragon fruit is gaining demand from consumers in America due to its unique look and mildly sweet flavor. Produced in California and Hawaii, it’s a tropical fruit with vibrant pink or yellow skin and white or pink flesh speckled with black seeds. Rich in antioxidants, vitamin C, iron, and fiber, dragon fruit is a welcome addition to cereals, salads, or a healthy hand snack.
Some ferns are known to be carcinogenic or toxic to humans, but not the ostrich fern. Native to the Pacific Northwest, ostrich ferns have edible fiddleheads that have a flavor akin to green beans and asparagus.
Sauteed, steamed, or boiled, ostrich ferns impart a unique flavor profile that’s sure to add some pizzazz to your cooking. And with a heavy helping of vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin K, folate, and riboflavin, you’re getting the nutrition you need every time you add ostrich fern to the pan.
Originally grown in Mexico, white sapote is now cultivated in both California and Florida. Despite its relative obscurity, this tropical fruit is becoming more popular due to its flavors, described as a cross between peach, pear, banana, and lemon.
Named after its creamy white flesh, the white sapote has many culinary applications, including use in smoothies, desserts, fruit salads, or by itself. Brimming with vitamin C, vitamin A, potassium, and calcium on top of its one-of-a-kind flavor, it’s a brilliant addition to a balanced diet.
Not every uncommon or strange fruit or veggie can be grown locally. Some are exotic or only found abroad. However, you might just find that the produce your taste buds have been missing is cultivated in your own backyard.
The only way to know what’s fresh, in-season, and available is to head to your local produce store or grocer. With fresher, locally sourced veggies and fruits, you can feel good getting the best fruit while supporting your community. And as they say — variety is the spice of life.
DLJ Produce prides itself on providing organic, fresh fruits & vegetables nationwide, we always promote shopping local to help growers and grocers alike. Tell us what you favorite fruit or vegetable is and we’ll write about it.