There’s never been a better time to embrace all of the fruits and vegetables that this planet has to offer.
Only a few decades ago, avocado and mango were rare finds in the average U.S. supermarket, but not anymore. Today there’s a colorful array of fruits and vegetables native to every corner of the globe that you can pick up in the produce aisle. Take advantage of the endless variety by exploring new flavors and textures.
Jackfruit. Don’t be intimidated by the world’s largest tree fruit. This gargantuan fruit is popping up in grocery stores in part because it has a meat-like texture. Native to India, the giant jackfruit is actually related to tiny figs. It’s a good source of fiber, folate and vitamin C. Try it in a Bolognese or swap it into your favorite taco.
Blood orange. Brighten up your citrus routine with a crimson blood orange. Like other oranges, this Mediterranean varietal is an excellent source of vitamin C and is also packed with anti-inflammatory properties from a phytonutrient called anthocyanin. Take it on the go for a sweet snack or add slices in salads or in your favorite wrap.
Romanesco. Cauliflower rice may be all the rage, but you’re going to want to leave this cousin of cauliflower intact. Romanesco boasts a beautiful fractal design, making it a showstopper when grilled to bring out its mild, yet nutty, flavor. Try it in your favorite dish instead of broccoli or cauliflower.
Lotus root. Like many root vegetables, the root of the lotus plant is not a bulb of beauty. But peeled and sliced, the lotus root has a beautiful pattern that makes the sturdy, fiber-filled vegetable a nice addition to soups and stir-fries.
Shishito pepper. Sweet and delicate, the shishito has a secret. Around one out of every ten of these peppers, native to East Asia, packs a spicy punch. Try them simply tossed in oil and salt and blistered on a grill or in a pan as a great appetizer or side dish to share.
Pawpaw. This exotic fruit is actually a well-kept secret in the Eastern U.S., where it is now gaining popularity. The pulpy fruit of the pawpaw tree has distinct tropical notes, which make it a welcome addition to smoothies and salsas.