There are a number of myths circulating about fruits and vegetables — from the fresh-versus-frozen debate to how to best store your produce. The following information will help put some these myths, along with others, to rest:
• Fresh vs. frozen — When fresh produce is not available or may not look its best, the frozen option is a great alternative. These fruits and veggies are frozen at their nutritional peak, and are just as healthy and delicious as when they were fresh.
• Not all cauliflower is created equal — Orange cauliflower has 25 times more beta-carotene then white, while the purple variety contains anthocyanins that are known to reduce the risk of cancer and diabetes.
• Potatoes with sprouts — Also known as eyes, potatoes sometimes grow little sprouts which prompts most people to throw them away. Actually, they’re perfectly fine to eat; it’s simply a new potato being formed. Cut out the sprout before the potato gets shriveled up.
• Refrigeration vs. room temperature — Tomatoes, potatoes and onions do not need refrigeration and are best kept at room temperature. Refrigerated tomatoes are not able to fully develop their flavor from their natural sugar and acid.
• Berries: to wash or not to wash? — Do not wash berries until you’re ready to use or eat them. The pores on berries, especially strawberries, soak up the moisture and can cause mold or bruising.
Spicy Cauliflower and Potatoes
• 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
• 1 bunch cauliflower florets, blanched
• 1 whole potato, cut into small cubes
• 3 garlic cloves, finely minced
• 1 teaspoon fresh ginger, minced
• 1 red onion, minced small
• 1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
• 1/2 teaspoon cumin
• 1/2 teaspoon fennel seed
• 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
• 1/2 teaspoon curry powder
• 1/2 teaspoon red chili pepper flakes
• 1/2 teaspoon salt
• 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
• 2 tablespoons cilantro, finely chopped
• 1 tablespoon whipped butter
Heat oil in pan and gently cook the mustard seeds until they start to pop, a couple minutes.
Add the onions and ginger and cook until fragrant. Then, add garlic and cook for another couple minutes.
Stir in cumin, fennel seed, turmeric and curry powder.
Add the potatoes, mixing well and cooking until they start to soften. Then, add cauliflower and mix thoroughly in the pan.
Add chili flakes and mix well, then add 2 to 3 tablespoons. of water and allow entire mixture to simmer at low heat.
Add the salt and black pepper and simmer until the potatoes become soft, tender and cooked thoroughly.
Add in butter, turn off heat, and then add in cilantro. Mix well.
Nutritional information per serving (1-cup serving): 186 calories, 6 grams fat, 30 grams carbohydrates, 7 grams protein, 381 milligrams sodium, 8 grams fiber
Emily DelConte, Kali Garges, Amy King, Kelly Markiewicz and Meghan Martorana write this column and are registered dietitians at EVOLUTION — Nutrition Counseling by Dietitians in Bristol, East Greenwich, Newport and Providence. They adapt the recipes from public domain or copyright-free recipes.