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HomeHealthy FoodWhat's in Season: February Produce Information

What’s in Season: February Produce Information


February Produce Guide

You’ll discover an inventory dominated nearly solely by citrus this month! That’s as a result of winter is certainly the perfect time for thus many types of citrus, particularly within the Sacramento space. I’ve stated it earlier than, however with the chilly and flu season, at the least there might be no scarcity of vitamin C. As a result of Lunar New Yr can typically stretch into February as properly, that is additionally excellent  timing for auspicious citrus shows of pomelos and mandarins with their inexperienced leaves and stems nonetheless hooked up.

Blood Oranges

BLOOD ORANGES

True to their title, blood oranges have an inside flesh starting from gentle orange with a streak of crimson to vibrant deep pink to darkish crimson wine. Blood oranges owe their beautiful coloring to anthocyanins, the identical naturally occurring pigments that make blueberries blue. Relying on the blood orange selection, their peels could also be tinged with a reddish blush and sizewise are sometimes smaller than common navel oranges. Not all peels have this reddish coloring, nevertheless, so you’ll want to ask the farmer!

HOW TO CHOOSE AND STORE BLOOD ORANGES

Just like different citrus fruits, select blood oranges which are clean and with out mushy or black spots. Retailer blood oranges at room temperature in bowls (and never inside plastic baggage or something unbreathable) for as much as every week.

RECIPES USING BLOOD ORANGES

Butternut Squash

BUTTERNUT SQUASH

This bulb-shaped winter squash has a thick tan pores and skin and a golden orange flesh beneath. The broader base of the bulb comprises seeds, which will be roasted like pumpkin seeds. The flesh itself takes on an unbelievable sweetness as soon as roasted. I dare you to not snack on the items after roasting, particularly figuring out this squash comprises nutritional vitamins A, B, and C!

How do you deal with slicing a butternut squash? This squash can look intimidating than it truly is. Try my guides on learn how to lower butternut squash and learn how to make butternut squash puree for soups and baked items.

HOW TO CHOOSE AND STORE BUTTERNUT SQUASH

Select butternut squash with a clean exterior and even coloring. Butternut squash will be saved at room temperature in a cool, dry place for a month. Nevertheless, when you hold the squash for too lengthy, the middle of the neck will dry up. Meaning you’ll be able to embody it as a part of your fall decor and nonetheless have it for soup a month later!

RECIPES USING BUTTERNUT SQUASH

Key Limes

KEY LIMES

The Key lime, often known as the Mexican lime, is smaller than the extra widespread Persian lime. In comparison with the Persian lime, Key limes are usually extra tart and barely floral, and the zest very aromatic. Opposite to what’s generally believed, a mature lime is pale yellow in shade, not deep inexperienced (which might point out it must ripen longer earlier than choosing!) 

Are you able to substitute common limes for a recipe that requires Key limes? Sure, you’ll be able to substitute common limes for Key limes. Nevertheless, I wouldn’t suggest utilizing Key limes in a recipe that simply calls for normal limes. As a result of Key limes are usually extra assertively tart, they’re typically used for candy moderately than savory dishes. Key limes are superb for, you guessed it, Key lime pie, but additionally lime curd

HOW TO CHOOSE AND STORE KEY LIMES

Select Key limes which have some give to them and ideally yellower in shade. They shouldn’t be rock arduous or darkish inexperienced. Retailer Key limes within the fridge for up to some weeks.

Mandarin Oranges

MANDARIN ORANGES

Mandarins are a broad umbrella time period for a lot of forms of smaller, quick sitting oranges. Tangerines (talked about under), satsumas, and clementines (typically offered within the mesh baggage on the grocery store) all fall into the mandarin class. Whereas the varieties are all barely totally different, they’re various shades of orange and customarily straightforward to peel with their free becoming skins. Seedless or not, the flesh is surrounded by a webby white pith and simply separated into segments.

A lot of the native citrus I encounter is grown in Placer County, northeast of Sacramento; there’s even an annual Mandarin Pageant in November. For extra details about the varieties of mandarins (and different citrus), take a look at this complete information by Merely Recipes.

HOW TO CHOOSE AND STORE MANDARIN ORANGES

Select mandarins with minimal blemishing. Retailer mandarins at room temperature for a number of days and within the fridge for as much as every week. They will flip rapidly so don’t neglect to eat them ahead of later.

RECIPES USING MANDARIN ORANGES

King Trumpet, Shimeji, Oyster Mushrooms

MUSHROOMS

White button, cremini, portobello, oyster, shiitake, enoki, and the checklist goes on. Whereas the dietary advantages range primarily based on the kind, mushrooms usually pack extra protein and B nutritional vitamins than most different varieties of produce.

This versatile fungus is properly utilized in plant-based diets for its meaty style. Mushrooms are, the truth is, a pure supply of monosodium glutamate (MSG). I typically use dried shiitake mushrooms as a significant umami booster in my vegan recipes, like for congee or savory tang yuan.

HOW TO CHOOSE AND STORE MUSHROOMS

Basically, select mushrooms with agency stems and tightly closed caps. Retailer in a paper bag within the fridge for as much as every week.

RECIPES USING MUSHROOMS

Mustard Greens
The mustard greens on the left are extra mature stalks (nice for soups), whereas the mustard greens on the correct are youthful (nice for stir fries)

MUSTARD GREENS

Bitter with a peppery chew, mustard greens haven’t fairly reached the notoriety of kale. This can be a disgrace, as a result of mustard greens provide good quantities of folate and nutritional vitamins A, C, and Okay. Like different members of the cabbage household, the sharp peppery taste will usually mellow out as soon as cooked.

In Chinese language cooking, mustard greens (芥菜, transliterated as gai choy in Cantonese) are simmered in soup, stir fried, or pickled (typically added as a topping for gua bao). Woks of Life compiled an in-depth information to the various kinds of mustard greens and their makes use of. Mustard greens are generally utilized in Indian cooking as properly.

HOW TO CHOOSE AND STORE MUSTARD GREENS

Select mustard greens with crisp leaves and stems. Skip over bunches with any discoloration or holes. Retailer mustard greens in a plastic bag within the fridge crisper for as much as every week.

RECIPES USING MUSTARD GREENS

Radishes

RADISHES

Spanning various hues of pink, white, purple, and crimson, radishes are a bouquet of spring shade. Whereas you could find bigger radishes, essentially the most tender radishes are usually the scale of ping pong balls. Widespread in recent times, the French breakfast radish selection is deep pink and an elongated tube form.

A supply of vitamin C, particularly when served up uncooked, radishes make a crunchy snack by itself or for dipping like chips. To chop again among the pepperiness, you’ll be able to toss them right into a stir fry or saute. Observe that you could additionally benefit from the tops, which will be ready in pesto or sauteed with olive oil, lemon juice, and a sprinkle of salt.

Observe that daikon (often known as 蘿蔔 in Chinese language) is a kind of radish! You’ll be able to learn extra about it right here.

HOW TO CHOOSE AND STORE RADISHES

Select radishes with clean pores and skin, no mushy or darkish spots. If the inexperienced tops are intact, be certain they’re contemporary and crisp as properly. Retailer radishes within the fridge for as much as every week.

RECIPES USING RADISHES

Sage

SAGE

Take a whiff of a bunch of sage, and also you’ll catch a heady, piney aroma, maybe a reminder of Thanksgiving stuffing. There are additionally yellow or purple varieties, however the silvery inexperienced sort is definitely the commonest. Sage pairs properly with richer tasting meals, in addition to apples and pears. Attempt some sliced up in your scrambled eggs subsequent time.

HOW TO CHOOSE AND STORE SAGE

Select sage with tender, not soggy or droopy leaves. Retailer sage within the fridge for as much as every week. Some sources suggest trimming the stems by an inch and protecting the bundle of sage in a glass of water in your counter, like basil. Nevertheless, I haven’t tried this storage methodology earlier than.

RECIPES USING SAGE

Tangerines
Small tangerines I bought on the Sacramento Co-Op

TANGERINES

Tangerines are a kind of mandarin orange, although with a darker, typically reddish pores and skin and a relatively stiffer peel. These fruits are nonetheless, nonetheless, straightforward to peel, simply not as simply as among the different mandarin varieties. 

In Chinese language delicacies, tangerine peels are dried and are often known as chenpi. Sunwui (or Xinhui) in Guangdong Province is well-known for producing chenpi (pronounced chan pei in Cantonese). These forms of tangerines have a lightweight inexperienced peel even after they’re ripe. As soon as dried, the peels flip darkish and are used for cooking (in crimson bean soup and orange hen) and in conventional Chinese language drugs. You too can discover sweetened chenpi in Chinese language grocery shops, that are eaten as a snack.

HOW TO CHOOSE AND STORE TANGERINES

Select tangerines which are with out blemishes or mushy darkish spots. Retailer tangerines at room temperature for a number of days or within the fridge for as much as every week. Don’t wait too lengthy, they’ll go dangerous rapidly!

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