Published January 18, 2013
Usually people are too blinded by butternut squash and sweet potatoes to pay attention to the variety of produce that hits stands once the temperatures drop. Try these 10 uncommon yet delicious fruits and veggies in our favorite healthy recipes.
A good source of vitamin C, radishes have a crunchy texture and slightly sweet taste. Cook them with a little salt or sugar, and they develop into a tender side dish. Or stir-fry them with other veggies, and they'll complement soy sauce perfectly.
2. Blood oranges
Include these tangy citrus fruits in winter salads, desserts, and drinks. Just like other varieties of oranges, they're rich in vitamin C and fiber. However, it's their deep red color that makes them an eye-catching addition to holiday meals.
3. Snow peas
A stir-fry favorite, snow peas are low-calorie veggies packed with plenty of vitamins C and K. Their crunchy texture also makes them a delicious contrast in pastas. Just remember that they'll only keep for a few days in the fridge, so cook them shortly after you buy them.
In a nutritional showdown, don't get cabbage confused with iceberg lettuce. A cup of this leafy veggie packs almost 100 percent of your DRI of vitamin K, plus vitamin C and fiber. And, like other cruciferous vegetables, it contains phytonutrients that naturally detox the body.
This stalk vegetable thrives in the cold weather and has a distinct tart and somewhat sour taste. Just like other tart flavors, rhubarb is best sweetened with sugar, honey, or fruit juice to balance out the acidity. And this low-cal veggie contains vitamins C and A and calcium.
The fruits of chestnut trees produce a holiday favorite that is only in season for a brief time each winter (from approximately October–December). They're a good source of vitamin C, but more importantly, they bring a subtly sweet, nutty flavor to a variety of vegetables and breads. Fresh chestnuts may be tricky to find, so try bottled varieties or visit specialty grocery stores.
Artichokes come into season in early spring and then again in early winter. Though it may be convenient to buy them in a can, fresh artichokes are naturally savory and delicious. They're rich in fiber, vitamin C, and folate, which is essential for producing new cells.
These sweet fruits have a unique texture that can be either mushy or firm. They're a good source of vitamin C and fiber, and are used to add a tangy flavor to salads. However, the fruit can also be blended into baked goods or festive drinks.
Kale is a delicious winter veggie that actually gets sweeter when the frost hits the ground. Plus its earthy flavor makes it a great addition to a variety of savory meats. In terms of nutrition, kale is a superfood, containing high amounts of vitamins K, A, and C, and even a bit of calcium.
You probably have your share of these tart berries on Thanksgiving, but they're so delicious—and healthy—that they're worth mentioning. Not only do they reduce the risk of certain infections, but they also contain vitamin C and may even improve HDL (good cholesterol) levels.