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How to Select Fresh Fruits and Vegetables

An apple a day keeps the doctor away from your stinky ass.

Fruit is good for you. All of it and so are veggies. It's better to eat fruit and veggies in their naked un-cooked state. However, blanching (see cooking techniques) is a great way to cook veggies and fruits too. To select fruit and veggies, go local and organic whenever you can. Choose plump healthy looking fruits and veggies, no bruises please. Did you know that a tomato is a fruit? Yes it is. Ripe fruit should be refrigerated until ready to eat. If your produce isn't ripe, leave them at room temperature until they are ready. Peaches don't last long when ripe, so eat those suckers up.

How can you tell if fruit is ripe?

Color is a clue, but not completely reliable. For these fruits -- bananas, apples, tomatoes, red berries, and cherries -- color change is an excellent indication of ripeness. Fruits like bananas and apples should have bright colors, as should tomatoes. Bluish-red berries become a deeper, more intense red as they ripen.

Sniff. Smell that fruit. Aroma is a good thing when you can't judge by color. This is good for all types of melons. The aromas should be robust fruity essence.

Weight can be a good indication. Heavy is a good. It means the fruit is mature.

Grope it. Yes you can feel it. Gently squeeze your fruit. Plums for example should a little squishy. The grope test is good for fruit that do not have hard skins.

How to store your fruits and veggies

• Fruits on the counter - Plums, pears, peaches, all lovely melons such as, honeydews and cantaloupes, mangoes, bananas, and tomatoes (yep they're a fruit) keep on ripening whether they're on the tree, in the store, or in your fruit bowl. Keep them on your counter for about 5 days. After you slice one open or they begin to feel soft put the fruit in the refrigerator.

• Fruit that should go in the refrigerator immediately include citrus fruits, pineapples, raspberries, strawberries, grapes, watermelon, and cherries. They don't get any riper once they've been picked. They just go bad. To slow the spoiling process put them in the refrigerator.

• Onions, garlic, shallots and potatoes do not need to be stored in the refrigerator. All other veggies do.

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