You are using an outdated browser. Please upgrade your browser to improve your experience.
Freshen Your Plate with These Often-Overlooked Winter Crops
It’s no secret that finding creative ways to serve up fresh produce in cold-weather months can be a challenge. But you don’t have to struggle this winter – use these fresh options to keep meals unusual and nutritious!
Radicchio: It’s not ridiculous, it’s ra-DIK-kio that is a member of the chicory family, along with endive and escarole. With slightly spicy, bitter leaves that are full of vitamins C and K, potassium and magnesium, this vegetable is quite low in calories and can be added to any dish for low-cal flavor and crunch.
Pomegranate: One of the world’s oldest and most nutritious fruits, the seeds from pomegranates are full of antioxidants and anti-inflammatories, which are heart-healthy and can aid conditions such as high cholesterol and high blood pressure. Taking out the seeds can take some doing, but the deliciously sweet, sour pods make it worth it. Drinking pomegranate juice also can reduce build-up of fatty deposits in arteries, a factor in many heart conditions.
Fennel: A little sweet, a bit crunchy and very healthy, this vegetable owes its licorice-like flavor to anethole, which has been shown to reduce the risk of certain cancers, aid in digestion, suppress inflammation and naturally thin blood to prevent clots. Fennel also is loaded with vitamins and minerals such as vitamin C, potassium, magnesium and copper. Try it in a fresh salad with celery, radishes, lettuce and toasted hazelnuts!
Turnip: Resembling a potato, this bulb actually is related to cauliflower, cabbage and broccoli. When raw, they taste somewhat like radish but slightly sweet and without the sharpness. They contain cancer-fighting glucosinolates, vitamins C and K, folate, fiber, potassium and calcium. Also, rutabaga can be substituted for any cooking recipe calling for turnips.
Parsnip: Looking a bit like a white carrot, this tapered root vegetable is packed with fiber, potassium, vitamin C and folate. With a slightly sweet flavor, somewhat like a carrot, it’s a great addition to any soup, stew and casserole winter recipe. Just a half cup of cooked parsnips has nearly one-fifth the recommended daily amount of vitamin C, with less than 60 calories. They’re especially tasty when roasted.
Sweet Potato: This versatile tuber has loads of fiber, beta-carotene, vitamins A and C and antioxidants – and is fairly low in sugar despite the name.
Ready for a hot bowl of fresh, homemade soup? Try this recipe for a winter warm-up!