“Ugly” Produce Needs Love, Too

Ugly PotatoWhen you look at the photo of the potato, what do you see? A freak of nature or something unique and, in its own right, cool?

When we see this kind of imperfect produce, it tells us that something interesting happened to the potato during its growth. We acquired this neat specimen at a farmer’s market. If you shop at farmers’ markets, you’ll see lots of produce that wouldn’t be “acceptable” in grocery stores solely because it’s not perfect. Regardless of the fact that it’s still eminently edible and delicious…and very possibly better for you than the “perfect” version (see NPR’s article “Beneath An Ugly Outside, Marred Fruit May Pack More Nutrition“).

We look for produce that’s not genetically modified and isn’t treated with herbicides or pesticides, so a bug bite here and there is no big deal to us. A bug-bitten apple or lettuce leaf tells us that the bugs found the produce tasty, too. The bugs know!

The next time you see a squash that’s unusually shaped or a cucumber that’s oddly curved, consider adding it to your shopping basket. “Ugly”, “odd”, and “weird” fruits and vegetables are really just regular ones that have faced some adversity, and maybe even come out better for it.