Guide To: Misfit Produce

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Every summer, plenty of imperfect-looking produce is passed over at farmers’ markets and grocery stores— even though it’s perfectly good to eat. Learn which kinds of defects are okay to ignore (or even embrace). Don’t confuse these examples with actually defective produce!

English Peas: Pod Scarring

Think of English peas’ pods as their protective armor. Even if the pods picked up a few scars while growing, the peas inside are safe and sound.

Heirloom Tomatoes: Zippering

“Zippering” on tomatoes refers to the zipper-like scars that may line the fruit. The usual culprit? Too-low temperatures during pollination. But a zippered tomato is delicious, nutritious, and altogether harmless.

Summer Squash: Scarring/Nicks

Unlike winter varieties, summer squash is thin-skinned and tender, so it’s prone to scratches after harvest (and it’s easy to prep and cook).

Stone Fruit: Cracking

Heavy rainfall may cause stone fruits like peaches to grow too fast and, as a result, crack open. Don’t sweat the small cracks (just eat around them).

Rhubarb: Green Color

We all know rhubarb for its rich pink color, but certain varieties flaunt some green even when ripe. These are just as flavorful as the rosier stalks.

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