Buying Fresh Fruits & Vegetables? Here's How To Pick The Best

Nothing is more upsetting than cutting into a shiny bright green watermelon and being met with a bland bite. Or maybe you're used to buying a dozen bananas and having them deteriorate by morning.  Making sure you get enough produce each day isn't the only challenge; it's more challenging to identify the best, ripest, and most delicious fruits and veggies. To assess the quality of your grocery produce, you must use all five senses. Start with these guidelines no matter what you're buying. 

Beautiful looking doesn’t mean best: Poor quality produce is created to seem waxy, shiny, and flawlessly symmetrical, whereas premium fruits and vegetables are frequently unevenly shaped, with tiny cosmetic faults outside but a world of flavour waiting inside. 

Pick and Check: Picking up a fruit or vegetable is a better way to learn about it than staring at it will be. Fruits and vegetables that are solid and heavy with taut skin and peels are fresh. 

Shop Seasonal: Produce that is in season is always preferable. It's natural; it's not artificially produced. Additionally, it is less expensive, and thirdly, it is healthier. 

Apples: Look for apples with smooth, matte, unbroken skin, a heavy weight for their size, and no bruising. The unusual blemish or dark "scald" streaks have no adverse effects on flavour. The flavour punch of an apple increases in size. 

Bananas: Bananas are at their sweetest when they have uniformly yellow skin or tiny brown freckles. Avoid any that have obvious bruising or skin splits. 

Potatoes: When stocking up on white or sweet potatoes, seek out potatoes with firm, undamaged skin that is also smooth. Avoid if cracked, bruised, or has a green tint. More often than not, loose potatoes are of higher quality. 

Avocados: Avocados should have a firm texture to the touch and not have any mushy or sunken areas. Shaking them should not cause them to tremble as this indicates the pit has separated from the flesh. 

Bell Peppers: A great bell pepper should be large for its size, with a smooth, vividly coloured shell. The stems ought to be a bright green. 

Broccoli: Vegetables with firm stems and densely packed floret clusters that are deep green or have a purple tint should be sought. Avoid any with fading heads because they will undoubtedly be more bitter. 

Mushrooms: Look for vegetables with securely closed, firm caps that are not slimy or spotted with dark soft areas when stocking up on button or cremini mushrooms. Consumption should be prioritised if the caps are open and the gills are visible. 

Carrots: Smooth, firm carrots with a vibrant orange colour are ideal. Avoid any that have cracks or flexible bases. The freshest bunches are those that still have their brilliant green tops, but its rare to find with tops in India. 

Cauliflower: When purchasing cauliflower, seek for a vegetable that is ivory white with tightly packed florets. Neither the leaves nor the florets should have any black spots. The leaves ought to be vibrant and lush. 

Lemons: Lemons and limes should have vibrant colour, good round shape, and thin, smooth skin. Although they are a sign of deterioration and the limes with splotches should be consumed first, small brown blotches on limes have no effect on flavour.  

Mangoes: Mangoes that will be consumed soon after purchase should have soft flesh that yields to light pressure and red skin with yellow splotches. Mangoes that will be used later on will have tighter skin, a duller colour, and a green stem. 

Garlic: A fresh garlic bulb should have securely shut cloves that are solid to the touch and feel hefty for their size. The skin should be tightly fitted and can be either completely white or have purple-tinged stripes. 

Grapes: Look for grapes that are ripe, wrinkle-free, and firmly affixed to the stems. Although there shouldn't be any browning at the stem connection, a silvery-white powder called "bloom" keeps grapes, especially darker ones, fresher for longer. The nicest red grapes are fully coloured and free of any green tint. The ripest and sweetest grapes are those that are green with a golden tint. 

Green Beans: Purchase green beans that are smooth, vibrant, and free of any signs of withering. When lightly bent, they should snap. 

Eggplant: Look for eggplants with firm, lustrous skin that is free of wrinkles and a good weight. Look for them to be springy when pressed, not spongy. Instead of browning, the stem and top ought to be forest green. 

Onions: Good quality onions have a beautiful shape, no neck swelling, and dry, crisp skin on the outside. Soft areas, green shoots, or dark patches are signs of a poor onion. 

Pomegranates: Choose pomegranates that are substantial for their size and have deep crimson, shiny, taut, uncracked skin. If a dusty mist emanates when you gently press the crown end, the fruit is past its peak. 

Watermelon: Look for a melon that is dense, symmetrical, and free of cuts and sunken spots. The rind should have a rounded, creamy-yellow underside that indicates where ground ripening occurred, and it shouldn't be shiny or bright. A slap should sound hollow when applied. 

Beets: A beetroot at its prime ought to have a smooth, deep-red surface that is firm to the touch. Smaller roots are more delicate and delicious. The attached greens have to be vibrantly green and not wilted.