Speaking Point: Summer is synonymous with sumptuous fresh strawberries, peaches and watermelons. They’re great sources of antioxidants and fiber and a special treat at this time of year. Here are some tips to get the best deals and save money this summer.
Speaking Point: 1. SUMMER VEGETABLES: Arugula, basil, bell peppers, broccoli, corn, carrots, cucumbers, eggplant, garlic, green beans, greens (kale, collards, turnip greens, mustard greens), lettuce, mushrooms, okra, peas, radishes, rhubarb, shallots, sugar snap peas, and summer squash.
Speaking Point: 2. SUMMER FRUITS: Avocado, berries (blackberries, blueberries, raspberries), cherries, figs, grapes, melons (honeydew, cantaloupe, Sharlyn, watermelon), nectarines, peaches, plums, pluots, tomatillos, and tomatoes.
Speaking Point: 3. BUY LOCAL: Cut out the middleman and buy produce direct from your local farmer. Shop the Farmers Markets. You’ll also get the biggest nutritional bang for your buck by eating fresh-from-the-farm food that’s picked at their peak of ripeness versus picked prematurely then kept in cold storage.
Speaking Point: 4. EAT WHAT YOU BUY: If you’re conscious about how you spend your every dollar, you won’t want to end up throwing any away. Berries are a superfood, but delicate. How often have you spent nearly $5.00 on a basket, discover they’re growing fuzzy mold the next day, and end up throwing these precious gems away? Protect your investment with vinegar!
Speaking Point: 5. VINEGAR RINSE: Prepare a mixture of one part white or apple cider vinegar with 10 parts water. (You won’t taste the vinegar since it’s so diluted.) Swirl the berries in this solution as soon as you get your berries home. Rinse and drain, then store them in the fridge. Vinegar kills the mold spores and other bacteria that are on the surface of the berries. They’ll stay mold-free, so now you can stock up when they’re on sale.
Speaking Point: 6. EDIBLE LANDSCAPING: Save dollars on summer produce and grow your own. Some of the easiest vegetables to grow are the ones you put in your salads. They grow fast, are likely to thrive, and produce well —; all without a lot of fuss. Try growing your own peas, radishes, lettuce, carrots, spinach, green beans, tomatoes, and zucchini. You’ll have food at your fingertips without spending a cent.
Speaking Point: 7. CONVENTIONAL OR ORGANIC?: Fruits consistently top the list of produce that are most contaminated by pesticides. Buying pesticide-free produce is the best choice, but they’re generally more costly or may be unavailable. Knowing when it’s smart to buy organic and when it makes sense to go conventional, you’ll spend your money wisely. When buying less expensive conventionally-farmed produce, shop for the least contaminated fruits and vegetables known as “The Clean Fifteen”:
1. Onions (best)2. Sweet corn, frozen 3. Pineapple4. Avocado'5. Asparagus 6. Sweet Peas7. Mangoes8. Eggplant9. Cantaloupe (domestic)10. Kiwi11. Cabbage12. Watermelon13. Sweet Potatoes14. Grapefruit15. Mushrooms
Speaking Point: 8. SUMMER SAVINGS: Fruits in season are generally abundant and that translates to lower prices. You can expect to save anywhere from $1.20-$2.00 per pound by buying summer produce in peak season rather than during off-peak months.